Tuesday, June 30, 2009

412...Happy Birthday Iron Mike

Mr. Tyson, who is featured in two films this summer, the documentary Tyson and the comedy The Hangover, turns 43 this day.

Bonne Fete.


411...It Took You Long Enough Senator

Bulletin from the New York Times:

The Minnesota Supreme Court has just issued its long-awaited judgment in the Senate race, declaring that Democrat Al Franken is the winner. And Norm Coleman, his opponent, at 4 p.m., announced that he had conceded and contacted Mr. Franken.
Wonder what Tom Davis thinks about this?

410...Young, Successful, Smart, Troubled

Words that describe former Palliser, Saskatchewan Tory MP Dave Batters.

The Regina Leader-Post reports that Mr. Batters, only 39, suffering from severe depression, decided to escape this reality yesterday at his Regina home.

A community leader, a husband, a son, a brother, one can only imagine the pain. Sympathy and good thoughts go to his spirit and his family.


409...Happy Night Of The Long Knives Anniversary

And you thought Chretien/Martin was tough.


408...Mike Duffy Er Senator Michael Duffy, Maroon

Honestly, how does a sub par TV host who worked cheap become a Senator? Not by knowing the way the Senate works as this cut and paste job from Maclean's illustrates.

The author is uncredited, as is the source but this is right on the money:

Mike Duffy has learned something while sitting in the Senate. Decades as a journalist and decades more as a sentient Canadian apparently did nothing to prepare Mike Duffy for the shocking revelation that awaited him upon being appointed to the upper chamber. As the Senator himself put it while traveling in Kelowna: "Once you get in there, you realize that every piece of legislation passed by Parliament has to go through the Senate prior to adoption. " Sweet bearded Jesus! Do the Fathers of Confederation know about this?? Someone alert the ghost of Adams Archibald! Wait - there's yet more that the intrepid Duffy has uncovered: "And the Senate rules are different than the House of Commons. Senate committees can't sit while the Senate is in session, so that puts you in the situation of having some pretty long days." Holy nutballs! Next thing you know we'll be finding out that, like the House of Commons, the Senate has its very own Speaker, Question Period and pervading sense of futility. But Duffy's trip out west was about more than revealing startling Parliamentary details previously known only to every child over the age of 12. He also talked a lot about wood. In fact, the front page of today's edition of The Daily News in Kamloops features the headline "Use More Wood, Senator Urges" - which is either a direct appeal by Mike Duffy to Canada's construction industry or Viagra's least effective slogan-spokesman combination ever. In the article, Duffy blows the lid off another state secret when he astutely observes, "We're surrounded by wood in Canada." With time to reflect, I'm sure he'd agree this wasn't the nicest way to refer to his new colleagues in the Senate. One final note from the Senator's journey of discovery: Some of you may remember all the way back to last week, when Duffy was going on about how he never really wanted to be a Senator but then, oh well, fine, twist my arm... and then how he was totally determined to sit as an independent because he wasn't the least bit partisan but then, oh well, fine, if you reeeeeeeally want me to be a Conservative... Read the following quote from Mike Duffy and see if you can spot the part where he comes across as a non-partisan, independent-minded member of the upper chamber. "I'm not holding my breath on an early election," he said. "We have to be ready, however, just in case. That's why we need your continued financial support and your help with the ground game. We've got to become born-again Canadians, I think, and explain to our kids, our families and our neighbours why the Conservatives are the party they can count on to work for them and for their values." Born-again Canadians? Um, okay. Makes sense, I guess. To paraphrase Jesus, only those who are born again shall be able to see the glory of government infrastructure projects and festival funding in their ridings

I need a job, I like to travel, I am not that bright. Please, Mr. Harper, may I be a Senator too?

407...Nice Gesture From Allan Rock U of Ottawa

I just heard this on 580CFRA, Ottawa.

Allan Rock, the President of the University of Ottawa has decreed that if you are the unfortunate son or daughter of a slain member of the Canadian Armed forces mission in Afghanistan there is a small silver lining inside of your dark cloud.

To wit, if you decide that the University of Ottawa is for you they will give you, provided you are under 26, a four year scholarship and pay for your residence in year one.



406... Shades Of Sam Bowie

In this morning's Ottawa Sun Sun Flashes tough news out of Houston where the Rocket's Yao Ming may lose not just next season but his entire career with a broken left foot.

He suffered a hairline fracture of the tarsal navicular bone early last month in a playoff game against the Lakers.

Tough break.


405...Canada Day With Me, 93.1 CKCU

And my good friend Crazy Tyrone Drummond.

For Ty the sky is always falling and this time the evil thing that will be done is some sort of unification thingy between Canada and the United States.

He will explain tomorrow and then tell you where you can meet and protest this awful state of affairs.

Deets complete tomorrow at six a.m., 93.1CKCU.

Plus, of course, tic.


404...Cut And Paste And Comment

From Michael Taube, Calgary Herald and the National Post.

Liberal Party leader Michael Ignatieff will likely never become prime minister . . . When you have victory in your sights, you don't give a political opponent time to regroup and get stronger. You move forward, bring them down, and defeat them in an election. Ignatieff ignored this basic principle--and his dream of moving into 24 Sussex Drive may have just gone up in smoke. (National Post --Full Comment, Jan. 31, 2009)
The former speechwriter for future Calgary Real Estate Salesman of the Year, Stephen Harper, Mr. Taube writes today that the next Prime Minister of Canada, Michael Ignatieff, won't be the next Prime Minister of Canada because he did not seize the day on a minimum of two occasions.
"Ignatieff has blown it again." He then cites "...an EKOS/CBC poll, the Conservatives have taken the lead with 34.8 per cent popular support, as compared to the Liberals' 32.8 per cent. The difference between the two parties is still margin of error, but it's the first time in six months the Harper Tories have nosed out in front. Methinks the margin will get larger."
Food for thought.
Evil, bad, distasteful thoughts.

403...Tim Horton's Moving To Canada

Weird headline, I know, but Tim Horton's has been corporately outside our home and native land for years, based in the States.

Now that Canuckistanian corporate taxes are lower than the Yankee ones Tim's has come home.



402...Making The Playing Field Equal

The Liberal Party of Canada is.

Rocco Rossi, the national director of the party, is, in a story reported by Susan Delahunt in this morning's Toronto Star, positively over the moon with the news that, in the post Stephane Dion era, party membership has more than doubled, from 40k to 90k, and revenues for the first half of 'o9, five mil, are almost as high as they were for all of last year, 5.9 mil.

Making the playing field equal with the Tories.


Monday, June 29, 2009

401...The Power Of Gold


From the super secure Royal Canadian Mint.

15, 300, 000 dollars worth to be precise.

No, not missing.


So says today's Ottawa Citizen.

This has happened before of course.

And the Mint had a nice little gambling operation going on inside its walls in the 1980's and 90's so it truly is business as crookedly usual on Sussex Drive.


400...Bernie Madoff Sentenced

150 years in jail.

Now, if he had of been a former Conservative Prime Minister...

God only knows.


399...Billy Mays Passes

Even if you don't know the name, you know who Billy Mays is.

Big white boy, blue dress shirt, khaki pants, black beard, and so very excited about everything.

New York Daily News reports "...he...was found dead at his Tampa home on Sunday morning... just hours after suffering a blow to the head during a rough plane landing on a US Airways flight.
It was unclear whether the bumpy landing contributed to Mays' death, but he complained about not feeling well before going to bed. "All of a sudden as we hit, you know, it was just the hardest hit, all the things from the ceiling started dropping," Mays told Fox 13 in Tampa. "It hit me on the head, but I got a hard head."

Or not.

Lawyers have been consulted.


398...Steve Priebe On 93.1 CKCU

Tomorrow morning with me at six in the morning, morning, morning.

Mr. Priebe is all about balance and balancers and earth force and schtuff like that.

Apparently will extend my life and your life and that is good good.


397...Toronto's Wasn't The Only Gay Pride Parade

This weekend.

It was only the dirtiest.

[Garbage strike you see, streets full of garbage, play on words, get you thinking.]

The Pride Festival kicked off in Minneapolis over the weekend.

A festival that, according to WCCO TV, is "...now the third-largest gay, lesbian, bi-sexual and transgender celebration in the country."

It is a celebration of diversity, choice and freedom.

And you certainly don't want people who think different than you to rain on your freedom fest, now do you?

For eleven years the Johnson family have passed out Bibles at the The Pride Festival.

No more of that, we are in favour of speech here, say the organizers and we think what you have to say is un freedom ish. Or something like that.

This year, as a special treat for the Johnson family, organizers of The Pride Festival had the Minneapolis Police arrest them for trespassing.

Makes one proud.


396...Thanks For Clearing That Up, Mr. Cannon

Randy Boswell writes in this morning's Saskatoon Star-Phoenix that Foreign Affairs Minister Lawrence Cannon has declared that we, we being Canada, are an Arctic superpower. Sorry, Arctic S U P E R P O W E R. Y'have to say these things really, really, really loud or no one listens.

He goes on to natter about how our superiority and blah, blah, blah will reach a consensus via the use of the United Nations and stuff such as etc. He then goes on to point out that there are five nations that border the Arctic, Canada, Russia, the U.S., Denmark and Norway, and we certainly are in the top five and that makes us an Arctic superpower. Er, S U P E R P O W E R.

Glad that is done.


Sunday, June 28, 2009

395...We Should Try Doing This With America

Cut and paste from The Canadian Press:

Canada has inked a free trade pact with Jordan that will lift duties on Canadian exports to the Arab nation. Trade Minister Stockwell Day and his Jordanian counterpart signed the agreement Sunday in Jordan's capital, Amman. Canada's forestry, manufacturing and agriculture sectors are expected to benefit from duty-free access. In return, Canada will give the Mideast country preferential trade conditions, including full exemption from customs duties for Jordanian goods. The deal is expected to be ratified by both parliaments later this year. Bilateral trade stood at about $92.2 million in 2008, according to a news release from Canadian government.
Duty free, preferential trade, sounds like a good deal for us and them.

394...Dairy Queen

I just got back from Dairy Queen.

That is overkill.

Too much chill.


393...Pat Metheny Tonight Ottawa Jazz Festival

I will be there with my red sombrero on.

Nine bells.

Sharpie in hand.


392...Note To Stephen Harper Re War

Stop already.

18 gazillion dollars.

On Afghanistan.

Stop already.

Spend the money here, on us.

Ottawa Citizen has a story online today about how "...[there are] more people needing in-home help and not enough nurses...who are willing to make house calls, the region's $120-million home-care program is being stretched to the limit." The article "Crisis On The Doorstep" explains how this home nursing program keeps sick people at home, seniors well and more importantly from a purely fiscal point of view, is less onerous on the health care system keeping people like Paulette Dizin, a cancer patient, out of the hospital.

Mr. Harper, stop the war, use the 18 gazillion to make your country a better place to live.

Ca va?


391...Capital Food Blitz Today

I will be with my MPP Yasir Naqvi at the Loeb's on Bank at 2nd in The Glebe, Ottawa.

Come, fill a bag with food for the less foodie.

Yasir is out there right now and put in six hours yesterday at the Great Canadian Superstore in Westboro collecting tons of food.


390...Tim Hudak And Why He Will Never Be Premier

One simple reason.

He wants to get ride of the Ontario Human Rights Tribunal.

The purpose of The Tribunal is to resolve applications brought under the Ontario Human Rights Code.

The Code is sort of like the seat belt law; if we didn't have the seat belt law, a lot of dumb folks would not wear their belts. The very fact that we have such a law keeps them in their cars in case of accident.

Ditto helmet laws.

What the Code does is keep dumb people [racists and other kinds of ists] from practicing their isms.

Ontario is not nirvana. Even though the law says that, for example, if you have an apartment for rent, you have to give Black people an opportunity to rent said apartment, many landlords don't. Example thereof being my landlady who won't rent to "those people". There are clubs that won't "them" in either. Homophobics and anti semites exist in Ontario too.

The Code helps mitigate the damage these fools can cause.

Mr. Hudak, a Michael Harrisian, doesn't seem to get that.

From a purely retail point of view, electorally speaking, how dya think getting rid of the Tribunal is going to play in the Jewish/Black/Sikh/Gay/Progressive/Etc. communities?

As a Liberal and as a liberal I commend the Tories on their choice for new leader.

Four more years.


Saturday, June 27, 2009

389...Michael Jackson Died Thursday

Ladies and gentlemen, Michael Jackson died Thursday.

Radio died right along with him. Most radio stations just kept John Tesh rolling, Ryan Seacrest babbling and voice tracking mindlessly ploughing through the playlist.

When John Lennon and Elvis Presley died, decades before consolidation, national program directors and big chains controlling everything from Toronto, Montreal, New York and Los Angeles most stations were immediately broadcasting on-air tributes, news accounts and playing wall-to-wall dead guy music.

In my town the only station that I heard going wall to wall Michael was the station that I am with, 93.1CKCU, which has, and this is a positive, a laissez faire attitude towards programming. Although the hit stations in town, TAG FM, KISS and HOT did talk about Michael Jackson they also played the songs that were programmed weeks, days, months ago. If anything, CFRA, the local right wing news talker and CBC ONE, the lefty news talker, were more on the story than the contemporary stations.

Not hating, just stating.

Score one for local TV, like Local4 in Detroit, stations that were out on the street in their towns and a big one for the Internet.


388...Rules To Live By

Don't spit in the wind.

Don't tug on Superman's cape.

If you think a pro athlete is on steriods don't call him on it.

J. C. Romero, a pitcher for the Philiadelphia Phillies, was recently reinstated from a 50-game suspension for violating baseball's policy against performance enhancing substances. Translation, he got caught juicing. The St. Petersburg Times reports that after Thursday night's game against Tampa Bay in Florida a fan, Robert Eaton, made two requests of Mr. Romero.

Request number one was for an autograph.


Request number two was "How about you get me some juice?" Juice being code for steriods.

Rebuffed followed by a witty "Shut the f'k up" and an alleged body slam.

Not a rocket scientist, Mr. Eaton cannot for the life of him understand why Mr. Romero would be offended. "I don't feel what I said was wrong," Mr. Eaton said. "I feel if you cheat the game you're going to hear it from people. He brought that on himself. I just can't believe that a professional athlete would cross the line."

Not a rocket scientist, Mr. Eaton still can see stacks of Benjamins coming out of his malfeasance and has hired a lawyer, James Magazine and will, as is the American Way, sue Mr. Romero into the ground as hard as Mr. Romero slammed him into said turf.

What a country.


387...Good News; Bad News

The bad news first.

My boy Randy Hillier is not going to be the next leader of the Conservative Party of Ontariario.

Finished 4th.

In a four horse race.

Tim Hudak is the champeen beating out two-time leadership hopeful Frank Klees, rookie Randy Hillier and Christine Elliott.

There really isn't any good news.


386...Jack Layton Done Like Dinner?

Now that JACK FM in Toronto is history the only Jack left in the Big Smoke is Jack Layton and if one is to believe what Richard J. Brennan wrote in this morning's Toronto Star, Jack2 is on his way out too.

By the way, you know, you know when they use an initial they mean business. If it was merely "Richard Brennan", okay, but "Richard J. Brennan" now we are talking some serious stuff.

I digress.

In a story headlined "Layton goes from kingmaker to bystander; Bubble has burst for NDP leader since coalition, and party has lost its momentum from 2008 vote" Mr. Brennan makes the point that when compared to Stephane Dion, Jack Layton was brilliant. When compared to the next Prime Minister of Canada, Michael Ignatieff, not so brilliant.

Support for the Dips was as high as 27 per cent during the fall election period; right now it is about 15 and that will translate into a lot of ex NDP MPs if it stays that way.


385...Headline Of The Day

From the Ottawa Citizen:

Jackson ‘didn’t look too healthy,’ says former Ottawa filmmaker
Now he looks dead.

384...ZeroMeansZero Is Wet

ZeroMeansZero, the Mayor Larry O'Brien hatefest, is soaking wet today.

For those of you not current on this file, the Mayor of Ottawa is in court. A former candidate for the office, a window licker named Terry Kilrea, has accused hizzoner of being a politican and convinced the Crown Attorney and the Ontario Provincial Police that that is a no no. Hizzoner made a bit of move to have everything thrown out of court yesterday. Alas, not happening.

This is what has got ZeroMeansZero so very wet.


383...Today Is Randy Hillier's Big Day

Today is the day that our favourite redneck [fingers crossed; and, yes, it takes one to know one] Randy Hillier becomes leader of the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario.

Or not.

Stay tuned.


Friday, June 26, 2009

382...Scott Tribe, Vernor's, Good Taste

Scott Tribe makes the case for Vernor's ginger ale being the finest ginger ale in the world.

Scott Tribe is right.

Wikipedia states that "Vernors is the oldest surviving ginger ale sold in the United States...[dating back to] 1866."

It is primarily available in Detroit, Ohio, Michigan, Chicago, Southern Ontario and Florida but, for example, in Ottawa, Ontario, Farm Boy carries it.

The finest.


381...Free Food In Ottawa

July 6th, a bit after noon, St. Luke's Park, between Elgin and Cartier in Ottawa.

I will be there. Red sombrero.

You be there too.


380...NBA, Jacko and Farrah

Quite a day Thursday, Farrah Fawcett dies, Michael Jackson passes and the NBA draft.

Overshadowing it all were the trades of Vince Carter from Jersey to Orlando and Shaq moving in beside LeBron in Cleveland.

I was also saddened when, for the zillionth consecutive year I was overlooked in the draft.


379...Conservatives And Crimes They Do

I bet Progressive Conservative MLA Mike Currie, Prince Edward Island, is glad that mandatory sentencing is not in effect on this very date.

The Guardian reports that Mr. Currie plead guilty this morning to assault.

Here is the dealy deal. On May 6 in front of Province House in Charlottetown when Mr. Currie have grabbed Rob McEachern of Priest Pond in the face and the chest after Mr. McEachern asked whether Mr. Currie’s wife had benefited from the Provincial Nominee Program. I.E. Are you or your wife crooks was the question?

His integrity questioned, his wife insulted, Mr. Currie went off.

It happens.

“I walked over to Mr. McEachern and I pushed him. Rather than take a deep breath and brush it off, I reacted out of emotion and in doing so I made a mistake.”

It happens.

No need to send him to jail and, whew, because there is no mandatory sentence outlined, at least not at this time, Mr. Currie, an upstanding citizen, Member of the Legislative Assembly, is going to most likely get some sort of discharge.

378...Conservative Get Tough Crime Laws Cheered

David Karp in this morning's edition of the Vancouver Sun writes that a majority of British Columbians approve of what federal Justice Minister and Attorney General of Canada Rob Nicholson and the Tory government are planning to do to fight crime.

You know, stiffer sentences and all that.

Like they have in the States.

The crime free United States.

No surprise here.

An Angus Reid Strategies poll found that a majority of Canadians supported including all sex offenders in the national sex-offender registry, ending conditional sentences for non-personal injury crimes, and implementing mandatory minimum sentences. Throw in ending the faint hope clause that gives convicted murders a chance to get out early, not that early of course, they still have to serve 15 years, but earlier and you have the kit.

Simon Fraser University criminology professor Neil Boyd said he wasn’t surprised by the results. “It’s quite discouraging, because the best available evidence doesn’t support any of [the Conservatives’] initiatives,” he said. “I think what it reveals is the fact that we have really not educated the Canadian public about evidence-based social policy in the realm of crime and justice.” The majority is high, 82 per cent in British Columbia for example.

Here is why the policy/policies are 1/ popular and 2/fail miserably. They are popular because God fearing, hard working, non criminal types, who don't break the law, really, really wouldn't break the law if the penalty was higher than it is today. They fail because, instead of reducing crime they reduce the amount of people who are willing to take the risk associated with being a criminal and select out those who are smarter. Smarter people have options, they can run a grow op or use their education to make something of themselves in a non criminal world. If you make the penalty for running a grow op prohibitive the smart criminals will de criminalize. But the demand will remain and that void will be filled by individuals who are less intelligent and not deterred, probably not aware even, of the mandatory sentences and what not.

Plus, it doesn't work. We have many American jurisdictions that have severe penalties for drugs and still have the plague of drugs. Mayor Michael Bradley of Sarnia, Ontario, made that very point on yesterday's The Point [CBC One] when discussing this very issue. He pointed out that Michigan has super tough drug laws, mandatory sentences and so on and a severe, non relenting drug problem. He also, and here is a guy who has been mayor of his border town since the 1980's, is on the Police Services board, is a pretty even dude, he also pointed out that the never ending war on drugs is expensive, uses up tons of police resources and is futile.

Bottom line is these get tough laws look great on paper but reality shows that they are anything but.


377...No Liquor Strike In Ontario

Call me cynical but I think that may be, just may be, this whole "we're going to go on strike" routine betwixt the LCBO and the union repping the employees may have been a simple ploy to clear the stores of stale merchandise without eroding profit margins.

E. g. Let's gerrymander a run on everything, including the crap we cannot give away like celery liqueur.

Yes, I am cynical.


Thursday, June 25, 2009

376...UN Drug Czar Says We Should Take Action

The United Nations' drug czar, Antonio Maria Costa, is urging Canada to take action on a report that identifies Canadian gangs as the leading suppliers of ecstasy in North America and increasingly proficient producers of methamphetamine for markets around the world.

"Canada has emerged an important hub for ecstasy and amphetamines," told a news conference Wednesday in the U.S. capital as he released the agency's 2009 World Drug Report.

Mr. Costa, who is from the drug free country of Italy and now splits time between New York City and Vienna, Austria, thinks that we, Canadians, should do what the United States does.

Coz that works so well there.


375...Stephen Harper

Future Calgary Realtor of the Year Stephen Harper says he is looking forward to working with the NDP in Nova Scotia.


He was in Hali today and met with nova premier of New Scotland Darrell Dexter and, apparently, it was chillicious.


374...Sex And The Governor

I was reading Columbia, South Carolina's paper of record, The State, http://www.thestate.com/, just to find out what Steve Spurrier was doing when this story jumped out.


The Governor of the Palmetto State, Mark Stanford, was away without leave for an entire week and it turns out he was in Buenos Aires, Argentina chilling with Maria, his girlfriend. A girlfriend his wife, four kids and the state he purports to lead, were unaware of.

As a sidebar, when he was a Congressman he voted in favour of impeaching President Bill Clinton, citing the need for "moral legitimacy".

Do as I say, not as I do.

Amazing story, can you see Stephen Harper, Dalton McGuinty or Jean Charest vanishing for a week to visit a girly girl in a far away land?

It may be wrong but it sure is interesting.


373...Falling Down At Mickey D's

Do you recall the Michael Douglas flick from the early 1990's, Falling Down?

Dya remember the scene where he goes into the fast food joint and wants breakfast but canna have it coz he is seven minutes late?

I had a parallel experience at the Elgin Street, Ottawa, McDick's this morning.

Fellow came in at 10 53 and wanted a burger and the manager, a clerk and the assistant manager all told the fellow, who had protested, that they don't service lunch until 11 and he would have to wait. At the end of the line.

Fortunately buddy took it a lot better than William Foster, Mr. Douglas' character, and for that I am grateful.


372...Grasping At Straws In Ottawa

In a move that to The World Famous Dan Shields smacks of desperation, the Lansdowne Live group, a group of business men that want to transform ancient Lansdowne Park, the fair grounds and football and hockey venue in the heart of Canada's capital, into a commercial and play mecca, are throwing support behind the return of football to my Alma mater, the mighty U of K, Carleton University.

Football was killed at Carleton over a decade ago because the team sucked and because the team sucked they had hardly any fans.

Oursportscentral.com reports that Carleton University is currently working with former Raven cornerback John Ruddy, current president of Trinity Development Group, in concert with other donors on a business model that would fully fund a football program through outside sources. Once the business model is established the university would be required to apply to the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) for permission to field a team.

The Lansdowne Live people also intend to bring back the CFL to Ottawa in the form of an expansion team.


Wednesday, June 24, 2009

371...Finally Good News For Cdn Manufacturers

We are world leaders in one sector.



The hug drug.

The Canadian Press reports that the United Nations says Canada is the leading supplier of ecstasy in North America and a growing worldwide producer of methamphetamine.

Number one. And it has all happened since 2004.

That is something the the Harper government can build on and create jobs. The Tory legacy.

Canada, making the party, a party.


370...Buffets Are For Birthdays

This is an important one.

I was perusing the Moscow News on line and was amused to discover that 25 years ago this month Tetris, my favourite video game, so simple yet so frustrating, debuted.

It is estimated that over a million people waste time every day playing Tetris. Moi aussi.

There is more, Henk Rogers, whose Blue Planet Software controls the game's licensing, outlined ambitious plans for the future that include a Tetris Cup and Tetris in the Olympics.

Happy birthday, darling.


369...LCBO Strike Averted

At least for now.



368...Step Away From The Buffet

I was just starting to feel good about myself and now this, a report from today's copy of The Journal of the American Medical Association says that becuase I may have noshed a bit too much when I was between the ages of 14 to 49, my chances of getting pancreatic cancer, a killer, have increased significantly.

Thankfully if one can eat one past the half century mark the risk becomes statisically insignificant.


367...Hitting The Buffet, Hard, Extends Life

I knew I was doing the right thing and now a report in the online journal Obesity supports my high caloric intake.

Mark Kaplan, a co-author of the study and a professor of Community Health at Portland State University, said in a release yesterday that people who are severely underweight and circus fat do not live as long as those of us, me in particular, that have a slightly elevated BMI [Body Mass Index], to wit, people who were slightly overweight [BMI 25 to less than 30] had 0.83 times lower risk of death compared with normal weight people.

Let's face it, if I get lost in the forest with some skinny dude, who is going to last longer?


Unless, of course, he decides to kill me and eat me.


366...The Other White Meat Is In Trouble


At least in the Great White North.

Chinta Puxley of The Canadian Press reports that "Canada's pork industry is on the brink of collapse and desperately needs at least $800 million from the federal government if hog farmers are going to survive."

I dunno.

Every year, same old, same old from farmers.

Just once, once, I would like to hear a farmer's group tell us that everything is alright, it is the best year ever, better than it has ever been, we got the right amount of sun, rain, whatever and have never made more money.

Just once.


365...Free Jazz In Ottawa

Cap off St. Jean Baptiste Day with three free surprise concerts that will be a special kick-off for the 29th edition of the TD Canada Trust Ottawa International Jazz Festival tonight on the Main Stage at Confederation Park with Ottawa’s own Souljazz Orchestra at 7; star flamenco guitarist Pavlo at 8 and; consummate jazz musician Terence Blanchard performing in a quartet at 9.

Of course I will be there wearing my festive red sombrero.


364...Free Jazz Tonite

More info in a minute.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

363...My Friend Steps Down

Personal friend of mine Penny Collenette has decided to not re seek the nomination for Ottawa Centre federally. This is being reported in the Ottawa Citizen online as we speak but I was aware of this, thanks to my sources [no I am not turning into Bourque!!!; that is how he spells his name, now, no?] around 2 pm this afternoon.

Mrs. Collenette was a brilliant candidate and would have continued to be such. Although displacing the heir to Ed Broadbent, Paul Dewar, the New Democrat representing Ottawa Centre on The Hill, if anyone was working hard enough to pull it off it was Penny.

She ain't dead though and said that she told the next Prime Minister of Canada, Mikey I. that "...he's not losing a candidate, he is gaining a fundraiser."

The only sad part of this story is that her husband, David Collenette, remains a Toronto Maple Leaf fan.


362...Tomorrow Is A Big Day In La Belle

Fete Nationale.

St. Jean Baptiste Day.

An excuse to party.

I love living on the Ontario/Quebec border.

Extra summer holiday.

Keep on rocking in the free world.


361...Al Green Tickets Tomorrow

A definite possibility.

6 in the morning.


360...Ottawa Jazz Festival 2009 2morrow 93.1

Tomorrow, 93.1CKCU, James Hale, Media Specialist, 6 40 am, plus tic.


359...ZeroMeansZero Would Love This Guy

If the boss cannot have a few pops to unwind what is the point of being the boss?

Shortly after meeting with fire and police officials Thursday night, Plainfield Township's [Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania] supervisor chairman was found unconscious on the floor of the municipal building with a half-empty bottle of Jack Daniel's nearby, police say. It is reported in this morning's The Morning Call that Democrat Timothy Frankenfield, who is also the township fire marshal, faces a public drunkenness charge. Police say a portable breath test showed his blood-alcohol level was more than twice the legal limit to drive.

But officer, he wasn't driving, he was passed out on the floor.


358...Liquor Stores In Ontario Set To Strike

I live on the border, a 30 minute round trip from the liquor store in La Belle Ville de Gatineau [secteur Hull] so this doesn't really affect me but if you live in the centre of the province and you are friendly with Prince Igor, Jack Daniels and Johnny Walker, you may want to make your way to the Liquor Control Board of Ontario today because tonight, at midnight, they are going to be struck.

The issue, amazingly, is money. More to the point the Union wants less part time, lower paid workers and more full time employees who get more money and more benefits.

If the 6 or 7 thousand workers strike 800 managers will attempt to take up the slack which won't be easy going into this triple holiday [Jean Baptiste, Canada Day, July 4th] period.


357...This Ain't Kosher

From connectmissouri.com [yes, I do read them all] which connects to KCRG, a television station in Columbia, Missouri, comes this story that moi found tres amusement.

Camp Sabra, a central Missouri camp that caters to Jewish kids, has been closed because 2 of them came down with the Swine flu and another 50 have symptoms thereof.

Not necessarily funny for them or the 350 campers that got sent home but, I gotta tell you, it made me chuckle.


356...18 Billion Is A Lot Of Money

Global National last night tackled the issue of how much the war, the War in Afganistan, is costing you.

Hard to get a number on it; Prime Minister Harper and the boys are very secretive about the whole thingy.

Anchorman Kevin Newman stated that "The future cost of the Afghan war has now been declared a national security secret. The government has never easily offered it up. During the election, Global National's reporting led to the release of an estimate...Canadian taxpayers, unlike those in most other countries, are now being asked to support a war they're not allowed it to know the cost of." Jacques Borbeau, a Global reporter, then said "Last year, DND released figures showing how much taxpayers will spend on the Afghan war over the next three years... this year, the defence department is now refusing to give up those numbers, arguing this is information which could reasonably be expected to be injurious to the conduct of the defence of Canada."

Or it is super expensive and for what?

Defence Minister Peter Mackay says the decision to keep the numbers secret was not his, well, dude, seriously, you are the Defence Minister, the buck stops at your desk.

The number bandied about in the report is 18 billion. Canadian dollars.

Here is why you should be upset.

18 billion shortens health care wait times, fixes highways, makes mass transit more efficient, lowers the cost of and improves schools at all levels.

18 billion is a lot of money.


355...Ed McMahon, Later

Ed McMahon, 86, most famous for his work as Johnny Carson's sidekick on The Tonight Show, V.3, from 1962 to 1992, and as the host of Star Search from 1983 to 1995, died earlier today in his hometown of Los Angeles.

Mr. McMahon, who's signature phrase was "Hereeeeeeeeeeeeeeee's Johnny", also was a Marine pilot in World War Two and in the Korean War. He ended his military career as a Brigadier eneral in the California Air National Guard.


Monday, June 22, 2009

354...Tough Week For Mikey I.

The next Prime Minister, Michael Ignatieff, is getting it in the shorts all over today's newspapers.

Boy, from the penthouse to the outhouse.

Still, he is going to be a brilllllllllllliant PM.

And Stephen Harper will rock as a realtor.


353...Excitement In Toronto

Fellow Blogger, Perez Hilton, claims that will.i.am, of the Black Eyed Peas, and his bodyguards assaulted him at the MMA's, Much Music Awards.

The Peas manager Paul Molina turned himself into Toronto police, The Associated Press reported a little after noon today.

Toronto, on the map, yet again.


352...FOX News Channel Reports

President Obama took his daughters out for ice cream to celebrate Father's Day weekend. The Fox News Channel immediately accused Barack of being "soft on calories."


351...I Love Mara Carfagna and Israel

Most things Italian.

Plus I shop kosher.

When it is on sale.

That said, I don't want Canada's democracy to fall into the pattern that Italy had before electoral reform and Silvio Berlusconi's charisma changed the face of their elected houses and Israel has, that being repeated elections that come up with minority government after minority government.

Tom Flanagan, Tory operative and poli sci prof at the University of Calgary writes in today's Globe and Mail that the cycle of minority governments "...could go on for a long time...the NDP winning 20 or 30 seats...Bloc winning 40 or 50, it's almost impossible for either the Liberals or Conservatives to get a majority...there just aren't enough seats in play for either to win 155...for the last five years [government] has been a condominium project of the two big parties."

The one good thing about this Liberal-Conservative, Conservative-Liberal sorta coalition is that it is not, like in the Israel's Knesset, a case of the tail wagging the dog.


350...Jessica Alba Says She Is Sorry

About the whale sticker thingy, Posts 258 and 267, June, 2009.

T'get you up to date, she was bored in Oklahoma City [as if], where she is shooting a flick called The Killer Inside Me and, as newsok.com reported she was photographed vanadalizing the town by gluing save the great white shark stickers on public property.

A no no.

Especially that far inland.

Charges were threatened, the Very Important Person's Act was put in play, Miss Alba applied cash to the situation, in the form of a donation of over 500 but not more than 9999.99 dollars to the United Way of Central Oklahoma.

Case closed.


349...We Love To Talk In Canada


And talk.

And talk some more.

In my town, Ottawa, we have been talking about moving the Central Canada Exhibition, The Ex, since the middle of World War Two. Still at Lansdowne Park. We have been talking about building rapid transit, a subway, something something, in this town since, minimum, the 1974 mayoralty eleciton. Still no rapid transit.

Parliament Hill is in my town and on the Hill they have been talking about buliding a superfast supertrain from Quebec City to Windsor as long as I can remember and I can remember back into the 1960's.

Here we go again.

Mike De Souza of Canwest News Services writes this morning that Joe Volpe, the Liberal Party transportation critic, says that now is the time for such a train and that it would aid in nation building. Even though they are separatists, the BQ follows the Canadian way and to that end the Bloc Quebecois transportation critic, Mario Laframboise dit "no way", unless of course, the nation you are talking about is Quebec and then what do we need a train for anyhow?

Oy f'ing vey.

Do something already.


348...Pro Choice; Pro Life

Which side of the fence are you on?

Knowledge is power when it comes to discussing the issue of women's reproductive rights.

I will have Jen Farr from Pro Choice Ottawa, PCCO [where does the second "C" come from? That will be my first question] on the radio with me tomorrow morning, six, 93.1 CKCU.

And then I will be at their meeting tomorrow evening, 7 30, at the Mayflower on Elgin at Cooper to find out even more about their action on the Byward Market in Ottawa July 5th.

Wearing my black sombrero and carrying a Sharpie, as per usual.



I am a big fan, ask my wife.

Or my girlfriend.

Actually I have neither, but I canna resist a cheap joke.

For those of you who either have breasts, are fans thereof or both, this is important news from my Alma mater, the mighty U of K, Carleton University, in Ottawa.

In a presser released today Carleton announced that Distinguished Research Professor Dr. Jim Wright is the co-investigator on a team of Canadian researchers who just received a $267,000 research grant over two years from the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation-Ontario Region. Also involved are other scientists at the University of Ottawa, the University of Toronto and the University of Illinois. These esteemed scientists are going to be putting together a proposal entitled Development of Non-Steroidal Estrogens for Hormone Replacement Therapy [HRT]: Progress towards the Pre-Clinical Phase.

In simpler terms, they are striving to find a way to ease women through the stresses of menopause with a more benign form of HRT.

HRTs, Dr. Wright points out, are beneficial because they help mitigate some of the negative problems associated with menopause, such as hip fractures from osteoporosis which carry a 30 percent mortality rate within a year. They also suppress hot flashes. On the flip side of the coin, a negative of HRTs is the increased risk of breast and uterine cancer, which is related to the length of time women take hormone supplements.

Dr. Wright is quoted in the press release as saying that "We want to help solve this serious problem by coming up with viable alternatives to commercial drugs such as Premarin, which is derived from horse urine..."

Seems reasonable to me.


Sunday, June 21, 2009

346...I Had A Girlfriend, Who Looked Like

A boyfriend. Or something like that.

Rule number one of Internet dating is, if they won't meet you after the first week, they are never going to meet you.

If only Dr. Antonio Castro had of followed that rule. Dr. Castro, who is both the Doctor to the Cuban baseball team and Fidel Castro's son, fell in love with Claudia Valencia, a 26-year-old Colombian and had over 20 Internet chats with her over the last eight months. I dare say Dr. Castro fell in love with Miss Valencia.

One problem.

To quote Lou Reed "Miami, FLA..she was a he...", 46 year old Luis Dominguez, a Cuban-born Miamian who said he orchestrated the sting to "shatter the myth" of an impenetrable" security system around the Castro family. In a story that the Miami Herald ran last week, Mr. Dominguez said that Dr. Castro revealed that the elites live differently, better, than the non elites in Cuba.

Uh, duh.

Just like everywhere else.

Nonetheless it is pretty chill that Castro Junior got schooled by a middle aged dude pretending to be a hot girly girl.


345...Money, Money, Money

From the front page of Wednesday's Ottawa Citizen comes this gem:

Text-message Markup 4,900%: expert

Their cost is estimated at .3 cents per text by University of Waterloo Professor Srinivasan Keshav. Your cost is 15 cents. Plus tax.


344...Good News For Ontario

The Conservative Party of Ontario is picking a new leader and the good news is that that leader is going to be soooooooooooo far to the right of Premier Dalton McGuinty, so far, so very very very far that he or she will be the leader of the opposition for ever and a day.

The candidates are all Mike Harrisian but my personal favourite is Randy Hillier, former head of the Ontario Landowners Association "This land is our land. Back off government". Mr. Hillier has called for the abolition of Ontario's human rights apparatus, among other things.

It is not a new day in Ontario.


At least not for the Tories.


343...I Lied


More Hockey.

Front page of The Gazette, Montreal's Anglo newspaper, trumpets the sale of the Montreal Canadiens to the Molson family.

The brewers of Export and other fine ales, the Molson's have owned the Habs off and on since 1957 and are now back in the game paying 550 million, give or take, to George Gillett for an operation that he bought from them for 275 for at the turn of the century.

Would some one please forward this to Gary Bettman with the note that, Mr. B., franchises in towns that enjoy hockey, like Montreal, Ottawa, Hamilton, appreciate. Towns like, oh say Phoenix, not so much on the appreciation.


Saturday, June 20, 2009

342...Hockey, Champagne And Burritos

I know, it is less than a week before St. Jean Baptiste Day, 30 degrees in the shade and then quickly comes Canada Day and the 4th of July followed by the Glorious 12th and I am writing about hockey.

An' I don't even like hockey.

But I am Canuckistanian and I do like burritos so, here goes.

From thecheapseats.ca comes a piece that states that "...Pittsburgh coach Dan Bylsma had a routine he followed...stopping by his local Qdoba Mexican Grill...for a BBQ pork burrito...Qdoba was smart enough to cash in on the craze to the tune of a 20 percent sales increase...a Facebook page was created...local news crews were covering the coach's ritual. There were even Twitter Tweet-ups, where fans would go watch Bylsma and his burrito in-person."

To keep the mojo going Qdoba had a burrito packed on ice and shipped to Detroit for Game 7.

Lord Stanley subsequently moved back to Pittsburgh.


341...An Aside To Rex Murphy

Your piece from today's Globe on Michael Ignatieff was just forwarded to me.

I presume you are getting paid by the word. The polysyllabic word.

We all know you are a smarty pants and a bit of a toff, now, geez, get to the f'ing point already, k?

Do you like Mikey I or no?


340...Bull Meet Man, Man, Bull

Mikey I and Stephen Harper weren't the only ones fighting for their lives in Ottawa this week. Lee Carruthers, a 50 year old cowhand at the Ottawa Livestock Exchange in the southern end of the city, lost a battle Thursday with a one ton Holstein bull, a battle that nearly cost him his life and ended up resulting in broken ribs and a collapsed lung.

Donna Casey reports in the Ottawa Sun online that Mr. Carruthers was walking through an alleyway at the facility when the bull decided that he didn't like Mr. C and took a run at him. Knocked to the ground, Mr. Carruthers slithered away, a ten minute slither with an angry bull in the house, not too nerve racking, and broke into another pen and then waited.

Mr. Carruthers is resting comfortably in hospital; the bull will be resting comfortably on a barbeque near you.

I thought Michael Ignatieff and Stephen Harper had the most exciting Thursday in Ottawa.

Wrong yet again.


339...Is This A Scam/Help This Guy

Like you, I get a lot of letters from long lost relatives in Nigeria, Liberia and other countries that, frankly, I don't think I have relatives in. The letters are always imploring me to offer a bit of assistance and, in turn, I will be rewarded with huge amounts of money for my kind efforts.

419 scams, so named because that is the section of the Nigerian criminal code that proscribes such activities.

Usually I get one missive and if I don't reply, and, of course, I don't, that is it.

Until now.

Every day I get this letter:

Hello, I am Major Clarence Eugene, citizen of the USA, with the US Navy Joint Special Op,USS COLORADO around Gulf of Aden,we have $30 Million US Dollars in our possession,which was seized from pirate between Yemen and Somalia in Gulf of Aden, we want to move the funds out of the USS COLORADO around Gulf of Aden. My partner and I need someone we can trust to actualize this venture, you will be entitled to 12Million USD and our share of 18 Million should be kept for us safely until we are discharge of our duties here in USS COLORADO around Gulf of Aden.Please respond for complete detailed information if interested, please do response using this email: major_clarence09@live.com Maj Clarence Hello, I am Major Clarence Eugene, citizen of the USA, with the US Navy Join tSpecial Op,USS COLORADO around Gulf of Aden,we have $30 Million US Dollars in our possession,which was seized from pirate between Yemen and Somalia in Gulf of Aden, we want to move the funds out of the USS COLORADO around Gulf of Aden. My partner and I need someone we can trust to actualize this venture, you will be entitled to 12Million USD and our share of 18 Million should be kept for us safely until we are discharge of our duties here in USS COLORADO around Gulf of Aden.Please respond for complete detailed information if interested,please do response using this email:
Major Clarence Eugene
My reason for posting this is to ask if you are getting the same? Everyday that is. Just curious.
I think it is sweet that a complete stranger from a foreign country would trust me with 18 million of his hard stolen money.

338...Women Aren't Furniture

Flavia Krause-Jackson of Bloomberg News is following Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi's visit to Libya's former colonial rulers, Italy.

Colonel Qaddafi met with Equal Opportunities Minister Mara Carfagna and at that meeting he called for a feminist uprising and condemned the Arab World for treating women like “furniture.” “We need a feminist revolution,” Qaddafi said in a speech in Rome last week after the meeting with Miss Carfagna, who Maxim Magazine has in their top 1 of hottest politicians in history.

Sidebar. Not only is Miss Carfagna ridiculously attractive, she is also young, smart and has the highest profile, at least outside of Italy, of any of Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi's cabinet. Those of you that listen to me on 93.1CKCU are surely aware of the fact that I have had a mad crush on the Honourable Miss Carfagna forever. And a day.

The Libyan leader, who not only talks the talk, he has 40 female bodyguards, demanded to meet her and 700 leading women in Italy on his trip. In his Rome speech he went on to say that in the Arab-speaking Middle East, a woman is “like a piece of furniture that one can change whenever one wants without anyone asking why.”


337...One Week From Today, Bring Your Gun

To church.


Refer to Post 217.

This ain't nuts.


Friday, June 19, 2009

336...We Have A New Oldest Man On Planet

With a refreshing attitude.

His name is Henry Allingham, he is 113 years old and as of yesterday he has officially been proclaimed the oldest man alive by Guinness World Records, after the death, also yesterday, of Tomoji Tanabe in Japan.

Mr. Allingham, who fought in the big one, World War One, attributes his longevity to "cigarettes, whisky and wild, wild women ..." in a report by lined Maev Kennedy in the Guardian.co.uk.

His current hobby is sleeping. A lot.


335...Clucking Like A Chicken Illegal In Kingston

Kingston, Pennsylvania that is.

When accompanied by a firearm.

And threats to shoot.

WNEP16 in Scranton, Pennsylvania, the home of The Office, reports that Gerald Wiernusz is as dumb as a bag of hammers. That isn't the exact way they framed the story, but they could have.

Mr. Wiernusz got hisself locked up in Luzerne County after police said he threatened children with a gun and clucked like a chicken. The cops said a group of kids were playing basketball when the apparently drunk man waved a weapon and threatened to shoot anyone who came on his property. He then clucked like a chicken.

Mr. Wiernusz faces assault and terroristic threat charges in Luzerne County and is looking at many, many, many years in jail.


334...Walter Cronkite Set To Join Ted Baxter

Radio Online reports that Walter Cronkite, one of the most influential and important anchormen and reporters in history, is knocking on heaven's door.

The man who was referred to as "The Most Trusted Man In America" anchored the CBS Evening News from 1963 to 1981.

The great man is 92 years old.


333...Law And Order Is One Thing, But, But, But

Geez, this Stephen Harper and his cronies, have you heard about what they want to be able to do to you?

They have introduced two pieces of legislation that will allow the state to spy on you without getting a warrant.

The legislation will require Internet service providers to give up information on their subscribers, info that includes your name, telephone numbers and IP addresses, without a warrant. David Fewer, acting director of the University of Ottawa's Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic was quoted by Jorge Barrera in today's Ottawa Citizen as saying that "The government has gone 180 degrees in the wrong direction. They should need a warrant to get this."



332...Ralph Klein Doesn't Like Michael Ignatieff

Good enough for me.


331...Speaking Of Montreal

Crescent Street is celebrating its 50th anniversary this summer.

There was a great story in the Montreal Gazette yesterday about how this summer marks the 50th summer of partying on Crescent. For those of you not familiar with Montreal, Crescent is in the west end of the city, and when referring to Crescent Street it is generally assumed that one means Crescent between Maisonneuve and St. Catherine's.

Truly an interesting part of the world. I would posit that on a summer night, like tonight, if one stands at the corner of St. Catherine and Crescent you will see a plethora of beautiful [as in cover of Vogue] women and [GQesque] men parade by. The most beautiful.



330...And U Thought Drivers In Montreal Were Bad

Milton J. Valencia and Martin Finucane of The Boston Globe report in Boston.com that their was a near plane/truck collison yesterday morning at Logan Airport, the main airport in Boston, Massachusetts.

Officials said the driver of the vehicle, a Ford Explorer, was on a taxiway and apparently failed to follow safety procedures requiring him to stop at the runway intersection and radio the tower for permission to cross. The taxiway, known as Taxiway M, is in the middle of the airfield and under construction. It crosses Runway 15R, the one the plane was speeding down. The truck was nearly clipped by the wing of the US Airways Flight 27.

These kind of incursions happen a ton at Logan. In the last year records are available for, 2005, there were 14 such incidents.

The Decarie is safer.


329...How Did I Miss This? Buster Douglas/Ott

Just saw the following on ZeroMeansZero, an anti Larry O'Brien blog that seems to be branching out to be more community minded.

It was February 11, 1990 that James "Buster" Douglas knocked out Mike Tyson. Las Vegas had Douglas as a 42 to 1 underdog at the time.
Congratulations to the Boys and Girls Club for last night's spectacular "Ringside for Youth" held at the Aberdeen Pavilion that raised about $125,000. Buster attended as a special guest.
Missed that entirely, but kudos to the Boys and Girls Club and it would have been so cool to see the man who took out the man when the man was really the man.

328...Set Your PVR, TIVO, VCR, Yasir Is On TV

Next Thursday, TVO, Cable 2 in most towns, 8 pm on The Agenda With Steve Paikin.

Yasir Naqvi is the rookie MPP for Ottawa Centre and last appeared on Mr. Paikin's program in September of last year. At dinner last night Mr. Naqvi told me ths show is going to be about newcomers to Queen's Park and how they are adjusting their second year into their terms.

This will be fun.


327...Better Sex Makes Better Workers

I was flipping through The Local, a Swedish rag that I am wont to read and I noticed the headline
Better Sex Makes Better Workers
Well, that piqued my interest. Ann-Christine Andersson Arneten is a Phd candidate at the University of Gothenburg and says that “Either you come home to something that gives you a possibility to rewind and recover, or you have a relationship that makes you more troubled,”
Some of the results of the five-year study involving about 900 men and women were obvious. Men like to get something something a lot a lot, quanity over quality whereas women like quality over quantity. If the getting is good, the working is too.

Also obvious was the fact that women thrived at work when they were in great relationships; did not thrive when in bad relationships. Men were different. The highest stress level for men was when they were in in-between, in the middle, type relationships. When a relationship was good, no stress and when a relationship sucked, same thing, stress free. It was the effort involved in the in-between deals that stressed out the boys.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

326...Football Is Back

Praise the Lord.

Men in spandex with plastic hats running fast and hurling themselves at each other.

Football is back.


325...I Am Glad There Is No Election This Summer

Bob Hepburn in this morning's Toronto Star, not so glad. He lists a half dozen reasons why Michael Ignatieff should have triggered an election this summer, an election that would have made Mikey I. the next Prime Minister of Canada.

Mr. Hepburn thinks that Prime Minister Stephen Harper must be a bus driver because he sure took Mr. Ignatieff to school.

He goes on to list the reasons that Canadians should have gone to the polls this season.

First off, the economy. Last fall the Tories were predicting rosy times and a budget surplus; 8 months later they are now forecasting the largest deficit in Canadian history. Secondly, employment insurance isn't; for example, less than 25 per cent of unemployed workers in Toronto can collect EI benefits. Point three is the claim by the PM that 80 per cent of the infrastructure initiatives promised in the spring budget are already being implemented. No, it is tied up in red tape and will take for freaking ever to hit the streets.

Point four is that the Conservative dominated Parliament is smoke and mirrors. While the country goes to hell in a handbasket the Tories are talking about sending people who grow a couple or three pot pants to jail. While the biggest companies in the country are in the ditch, MPs from all parties are spending their days yelling at each other about lost tape recorders. Mr. Hepburn reports that "...Parliament has not passed a major piece of non-budgetary legislation since the Tories took power in January 2006." That is three and a half years ago. Fifth point ties into number four and it is Stephen Harper's contempt of Parliament. He thinks so little of The House of Commons that he released his economic update last week in Guelph with a phony question-and answer session hosted by Senator Mike Duffy, the former TV hack who brown nosed his way into a cash for life job.

Final point is the attitude towards Toronto. Love it or hate it, Toronto is the centre of our country culturally and economically and has the largest most diverse population. The Tories hate this Tronna. "The most blatant example came last week when Transport Minister John Baird told his aides that Toronto officials who were complaining about Ottawa's slow handling of requests for infrastructure money 'should f--- off.'"


324...Tragedy In The Air

From 77WABC, New York, Rush Limbaugh's home station, this breaking news:

A Continental Airlines jet whose pilot died in mid flight over the Atlantic has landed safely at Newark Liberty International Airport. The pilot died while on a flight from Brussels to Newark; the first officers landed the aircraft with 247 people on board. The 61-year-old pilot was reportedly based in Newark and died of natural causes.

Amazing, eh?


323...Alluding To 312, If Vick Killed A Person

Michael Vick that is, the former Atlanta Falcon superstar quarterback who has spent a good chunk of his valuable career in jail and is still on indefinite suspension from the National Football League for his reprehensible involvement in the Bad Newz Kennels dog fighting case.

Mr. Vick was both indicted and convicted in Virginia on federal and state offenses involving the abuse, misuse and deaths of several dogs. He did real time, including a stretch in Leavenworth, Kansas, which has housed, among others, Machine Gun Kelly, Bugs Moran and Robert Stroud, the former Birdman of Alcatraz. Plus Mr. Vick has literally went from the Penthouse to the Jailhouse, filing for bankruptcy earlier this year.

Does the punishment fit the crime?


But, and here is the rub, look at the case of Leonard Little, a current NFL player with St. Louis' Rams who killed a human being in 1998 while driving drunk and recieved 90 days in jail and an 8 game suspension from the NFL in 1999. In 2004 Mr. Little was arrested again for DUI and convicted of speeding yet recieved no suspension.

Or, rub again and look at the case of Donte Stallworth of the Cleveland Browns who killed a man in March of this year in Miami Beach, Florida and got 90 days in jail. No suspension yet.

I am not saying that Michael Vick got a bum rap, but, geez, years for messing with dogs, days for killing a human being, that is some serious bullsh't.


322...Jenny McCarthy Is Pretty

Not particularly smart, but very, very, verrrrrrry pretty.

More later.


321...Jean Baptiste Day Is Fast Approaching

I cannot think of a better place to shop than Giant Tiger.

Tiger Geant sent me a loverly email indicating that you and I can stock up in time for the big day.

For example a big, big, big Fleur-de-lis, less than ten Canadian dollars.

Fireworks, less than thirty Canadian dollars.

Smokes, always the best price.

In Canadian dollars.

bHappy Jean Baptiste Day!

320...X Does Not Mark The Spot

The Next Prime Minister of Canada, Michael Ignatieff, in a great display of statesmanship, delayed his inevitable move to 24 Sussex Drive by coming to a compromise and agreeing to not take down the Conservative government this week.


This shows why Mikey I. will be one of the greatest Prime Ministers ever; he continues to show how strong and principled he is. Plus it gives the current Prime Minister time to bone up on Alberta real estate law for the big test he will have to take to become a real estate agent back home in Calgary when his political career winds down in the next couple of years.

I have said it before and will say it again: Stephen Harper will sell homes like nobody before him. He has that "je ne sais quoi".

One person who didn't approve was L. Ian MacDonald is editor of Policy Options magazine who wrote disapprovingly of Mr. Ignatieff on page A23 of today's National Post. Mr. MacDonald, if memory serves, has been a Tory hack since, minimum, the days of Brian Mulroney, the pre PM Muldoon, so, it does not suprise that his bylined article "Ignatieff's lousy week" was disproving.


Wednesday, June 17, 2009

319...More Local Media

Thursday morning, 8 to be precise, moi, The World Famous Dan Shields, on 93.1CKCU.

It is exciting to be able to share my views on our community and expose you to things you may not be aware of.

Tomorrow a little chat with Steven Marriner from Monkey Junk, a band that is thrilled to be playing the 2009 Cisco Ottawa Bluesfest.

Mr. Marriner will be joining me via the phone from Oprah's hometown of Chicago at about 8 30 and I will have some of his music and may be, may be, some swag to give away.

Fingers firmly crossed.


318...MP's Are Going To Make The CRTC Decide

What to do to save local TV.

I mean "save" local TV.

Jennifer Ditchburn writes that "The Canadian Press has learned that a majority report by the House of Commons heritage committee, to be tabled Friday, makes no recommendation about whether broadcasters should be able to charge cable companies for carrying their signals, referred to as 'fee for carriage.'''

My stand is that the CRTC should take a close look at the American model which only allows local channels on the cable systems in the community that they serve. As it stands now I get, and I like this, don't get me wrong, network affiliates from the Atlantic to the Pacific and back. What CTV, CBC, E! et. al. are doing is cannibalizing the industry. In my town, Ottawa, we have 16 over the air channels but virtually all of them are repeaters of Toronto signals. If CITY, TVO, Global and on and on want to have a presence in the Ottawa-Gatineau market that is great but they should have a local operation running local news, programming and so on. It gets worse in markets like London, Kitchener, Sudbury, North Bay, Thunder Bay and and and and.

TV tells stories. Watch local American stations and you will get a feel for the community that the station is intended to serve through its programming and the fact that it offers local business advertising at reasonable rates. When watching Canadian TV note that most of the advertising, even on local stations, is for national or regional stores and product lines.

It is time to save and enhance local TV, create jobs and although it is difficult for us to admit that the damn Yankees do stuff right, the Americans do do local media, including TV, better than we do, in small and big markets.


317...Dalton Does Right Again

I saw this live on CTVNewsThingy and now The Canadian Press has it, Premier Dalton McGuinty says from now on, the government and all its agencies will no longer allow sole-sourced contracts for consulting services.

That is the good news.


The bad news is, in addition, under new rules consultants will not be allowed to bill extra for hospitality, incidental and food expenses.

As someone who has made much of his way through life by urban foraging, I have to say the implication of less free food for moochers such as myself is not a happy thought but, greater good and all that.


316...Honey, I've Lost The Gold

Ottawa Citizen today reports that, hmmm, a tour guide at the Royal Canadian Mint, told a tour that they, the Mint, had misplaced 7 000 000 in gold to slag.

Ah sh't happens.

This makes the magic number of missing gold about 13 large.

One would think if the tour guides have this information, everyone has this information.


315...Cisco Ottawa Bluesfest Moves

To a second venue,the Byward Market in Ottawa.

From July 9th to the 13th the 2009 Cisco Ottawa Bluesfest will have an outdoor stage at the corner of York and William on the market to complement the exiting LeBreton Flats site. Plus they will be using ten indoor venues such as Zaphod's, The Rainbow and Mavericks.

On the list of 75 acts hitting the Market are George Clinton and the P-Funk All Stars, who, by the by, are ridiculous; Arrested Development and; Serena Ryder.

The Cisco Ottawa Bluesfest would like to recognize the generous support of the Government of Canada who were ably represented by the Honourable John Baird and a second Ottawa MP, Pierre Pollievre. Richard Mahoney, the President of the 'fest also said a few words as did the boss of bosses, Mark Monahan.


314...Ignatieff Talks Self Off Ledge

Reads the headline in today's National Post.

The complete headline in John Ivision's article this morning is:

Ignatieff talks self off ledge; Liberals in no shape for a summer election

Beauty headline, eh? And as Mr. Ivision goes on to write, the Tories seem more prepared to hit the polls than the Libs, Dips or Le Bloc with 21 times as many candidates registered with Elections Canada than the Liberals. The fact that the Liberal Party is in disarray indicates that when the writ is dropped they will simply impose candidates, without the fuss of nomination battles. The Liberals could simply re-nominate everyone who ran last time; considering the election was less than a year ago this will be relatively facile. In addition to the party's 77 MPs, 18 former Liberal MPs are said to be running or are thinking about it. This of course is a problem for Mikey I. because it is same old same old same old not the new blood that Mr. Ignatieff would surely like to the Liberal fold.

Better later than sooner. In this writer's view the next Prime Minister of Canada would be better served by chilling out and waiting until the fall of 2010 to take out the Conservatives.


313...Gary Bettman Doesn't Need Viagra

Coz the 2009 Stanley Cup playoffs provided him with enough to keep him going for a long, long, long time.

Not just the fact that it was a superb seven game series between Pitts and Detroit, no, it was the fact that last Friday's game seven drew 3.529 million viewers on average during the entire game on CBC and around 8 million on NBC.

That was the biggest audience since 1973; were you alive in '73?

The fact that the NHL is equal to its numbers from 36 years ago should make Commissioner Bettman very happy.

The fact that the NHL is equal to its numbers from 36 years ago should make Commissioner Bettman very concerned.

It is a sword that cuts both ways.