Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Thank you, Japan automakers, for succeeding where we keep failing

Here is great news for the environment:

By 2010, Japan will aim to mass produce two-seater electric vehicles capable of running about 80 kilometers (50 miles) per charge, as well as 30 percent more fuel-efficient hybrid vehicles.

It's great that Japan is picking up so much of North America's slack on oil dependence and consumption. Will this mean sales availability of these same cars on this side of the Pacific, too?

Of course, it's not a magic bullet - the electricity to drive these vehicles has to be clean, too. This is still a step in the right direction.

Ahmadinejad vs. Bush

From TIME magazine, original here
Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2006
Sneak Preview: Ahmadinejad vs. Bush
Prompted by the Iranian President's challenge, we imagine how the debate might play out

"I suggest holding a live TV debate with Mr. George W. Bush to talk about world affairs and the ways to solve those issues," [Iranian President Mahmoud] Ahmadinejad told reporters.
—Reuters, Aug. 29

TIM RUSSERT: President Bush, President Ahmadinejad, I want to thank both of you for coming to Washington University in St. Louis for this important debate on world affairs.

MAHMOUD AHMADINEJAD: You are most welcome, journalistic swine.

GEORGE W. BUSH: I'd like to salute the people of St. Louis, who have rebounded from immense tragedy to embody the courage and will of the American people in their dreams of living in freedom.

RUSSERT: All due respect, sir, but I don't think St. Louis has had any immense tragedies recently.

BUSH: I am referring, of course, to the uninspired play this season of the Cardinals who, though hanging on to first place in the mediocre National League Central, seem doomed to fall to the upstart Mets come October. Mr. Ahmadinejad has repeatedly refused to engage in a serious debate over the mysterious pitching woes of former 20-game winner Mark Mulder, who now struggles with a plus-6.00 ERA despite his country's unparalleled atmosphere of opportunity and freedom.

AHMADINEJAD: As I have said before, the Cardinals, like all your bloated capitalistic teams, have too long relied on the formidable Albert Pujols to carry them offensively at the expense of cultivating young arms on its farm system, much like the formerly invincible U.S. has always depended on cheap labor from Third World countries and intellectual resources from Europe instead of developing a strong infrastructure.

RUSSERT: Gentlemen, I think we're getting away from the important issues here. Now, President Ahmadinejad, you mentioned the " formerly invincible U.S. " Do you really think -

BUSH: That movie demonstrated the resolve and freedom of the American people.

RUSSERT: Excuse me?

BUSH: "Invincible," starring Mark Wahlberg as a down-on-his-luck bartender who never even played college football yet makes the Eagles -- in Philadelphia, our country's symbol of liberty and freedom.

AHMADINEJAD: Like all Hollywood exports, the film was predictable and trite, burnishing the image of an American dream that is no longer achievable to anyone but those born into wealth. A wholly meretricious message.

BUSH: It was based on a true story, buddy. Fixing the facts around the policy of gripping entertainment is fair game.

RUSSERT: May I request the presidents stay on topics relevant to global affairs. Obviously, the recent arrests in London of 24 people allegedly attempting to explode several transatlantic planes has sent shock waves -

BUSH: Read my lips: Fergie's solo project, the smash single "London Bridge," will go down as the summer's freedom anthem of '06.

AHMADINEJAD: Without the backing support of the powerful Black Eyed Peas, Fergie, like the lapdog Tony Blair, warbles off-key to herself as the world ignores her abyss of talent.

RUSSERT: Okay, I heard "Tony Blair" in there. Let's talk about U.S.-British hegemony -

BUSH: You ever see "America's Got Talent" ? Condi doesn't let me stay up that late, but I watched it on mute and saw an act where this woman changed her outfit every five seconds. Now, that's talent. And freedom for American women to wear different outfits, unlike their oppressed Iranian sisters.

AHMADINEJAD: Merely a visual metaphor for the mercurial alliances the opportunistic U.S. makes when the winds of political change shift, as well as a comment on its superficial, image-obsessed culture.

BUSH: Hey, I don't see a show called "Iran's Got Talent."

RUSSERT: Please! I thought we were convening for a debate on serious, crucial -

BUSH: Oh, man, I bet that Suri Cruise never shows up in public.

AHMADINEJAD: This is one issue on which Mr. Bush and I agree. The daughter of Cruise and Holmes is as nonexistent as the purported state of Israel.

BUSH: What is Tom Cruise thinking? His approval ratings are in a nosedive, yet he refuses to admit he made any mistakes or correct his behavior. How are his handlers letting this happen? If I were advising him, I'd tell him to do a "Top Gun" sequel, pronto. Americans love jets and flight suits. Also freedom.

AHMADINEJAD: You could bring back Goose in flashbacks ...

BUSH: Absolutely. This time, of course, the faceless enemy would be Islamic fundamentalists who are jealous of our freedom.

AHMADINEJAD: I see things a bit differently there, two-faced infidel cur, but otherwise I would be interested in collaborating on a screenplay with you.

BUSH: Good, because I need help with spelling and commas and stuff like that.

RUSSERT: On that conciliatory note, I think it's time to end this debate. Thanks to viewers in America and Iran and worldwide for tuning in and for your patience, thanks to Washington University in St. Louis for hosting, and thanks to both leaders for taking time out of their schedules to discuss the latest in sports, film, music, TV, and celebrity gossip.

BUSH: You forgot to thank Poland.

To read more of Teddy Wayne's writing, go to

Monday, August 28, 2006

Vatican: Stalin and Hitler demon-possessed

The Chief Exorcist of the Vatican (didn't know they had one, didja?) claims that Stalin, Hitler, and the Nazis were all possessed by demons. It also reveals - news to me - that Pius XII actually attempted a "long-distance" exorcism of Hitler.

(I recall when John Paul II's Chief Exorcist warned to beware of wonky electricity in one's home, as it could be indicative of the presence of demons.)

Don't think I'm laughing - I don't disbelieve anything. But I generally tend to think that this is a real convenient excuse for the Church to explain evil actions. I lean towards assuming that Hitler and Stalin were both just assholes.

A Hare Beats a Tortoise

Faced with David Chernushenko, a moderate, practical, realistic, creative and inventive guy more interested in solution-finding than in show, the Green Party has selected Elizabeth May as Leader.

As an activist, May is accomplished and deeply principled, putting values over advancement, much to her credit. As a politician, I think she's a bull in a china shop - she is bombastic and obnoxious, and seeks to belittle rather than coax alliance, or unite. If she really *needed* to bring up NAFTA, she might have instead asked Canadians to re-examine it with their hearts and not their pocketbooks, or simply talked about how she feels the agreement is environmentally detrimental, leaving out the drawing-a-line-in-the-sand act. Most Canadians are generally pleased with NAFTA, and while they could be evenutally coaxed into a furor over it by a clever politician, they're not going to turn out en masse to suddenly defeat it.

As an activist, she's probably been Excellent. At very least she's been Very Good. I just don't see her as a viable Leader, and I don't support Leaders who are not focused on winning. She's more interested in being a "voice", and misses that actually having an MP (or two) is the best way to have a voice. She is interested in having a pulpit, not in being elected. She has Jack Layton ("We realize we cannot win")'s Disease -- at least Ed Broadbent really went for the gold.

Granted, she might have the sway to get onto the televised debates - which would be great.

I like a multi-party system, I'm an environmentalist voter, and I want to have a viable Green Party option. If she turns out to work out well, I'll happily - happily - eat my words.

(If you haven't, check out ChuckerCanuck's post on Elizabeth May, in which he theorizes that she might win over David Orchard, and that a May-Orchard combination might prove MP-worthy. I can't disagree with that, it is a possibility.)

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Greens elect May, impersonate the Rocky Horror Picture Show

RIFF RAFF: Say good-bye to all of - this. And hello - to oblivion.

Green Selection

I'm not a member or specific supporter of the Green Party, though the environment is a big concern to me, and major voting issue. I like to see viable options for a really competetive democracy, and I really hope the Greens will choose a strong leader who can bring in more voter support. I've yet to have a local riding candidate I'd vote for - although I happily would choose a solid Green over supporting Layton or Graham (the CPC just isn't an option in this riding). Go, best leadership candidate, go!

Friday, August 25, 2006

Honk If Pluto Is Still A Planet

Honk honk.

Thursday, August 24, 2006


I really disagree with the silly politics of and

I dislike dishonesty in politics, and these sites paint the entire party as anti-Semites, which is not accurate. I disliked the Conservatives being generalized as racist rednecks, I dislike this as much, and in the same way.

However, the "Buy HezboLiberal Gear!" with the Liberal red burqua is funny.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


I'm of mixed feelings. As far as I can understand, the terror list is not the "name-calling" list, it's the "no-fundraising" list.

If Borys W. and Peggy N. don't understand that, then I don't feel they are really up to speed on Foreign Affairs/Relations, and BW probably should, on that basis alone, resign as Critic.

Apparently, he is on tape saying Hezbollah should be removed from the list - and so, my feeling is that his denials are dishonest. That also is call to resign.

If he said that, I do NOT begrudge him making an offhand comment about a thought still-in-progress. Rather than denying, however, he should have excused himself for speaking too fast. He handled himself poorly.

This is why I don't love having MPs as Cabinet and such.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Peggy Nash is my MP

As far as I'm able to ascertain, the Terrorist List is not a 'Shame List', it's a 'No Fundraising Allowed List', and so the idea of taking Hezbollah off of it is, so far as my understanding of the list goes, really absurd. Borys and Peggy should be reprimanded for such a foolish idea.

If *ANY*thing, they should have suggested changing the name to the 'No Fundraising List' or 'Do Not Collect $200 List', but advising the removal of Hezbollah from it is inappropriate at this time.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Call him Bob

My dad has three pick-up trucks, two rifles and a shotgun. He's got a big bone to pick with the NDP, but whenever Bob Rae's name comes up, he's always said, "But I tell you, he wasn't too bad at all, that guy just did what any sensible person in a government would do. It just goes to show you that all of this politics is just talk, it's just for show - none of these guys think any damn thing different from another guy, they just talk different to get votes and then when they're in power, they all do the same things as you or me or anyone with any sense would do."

I don't think it's "all talk just for show", and I think there are differences between most parties, but Bob Rae is no ideologue, and for that I'd be content if he were to end up the champion in the leadership race.

Bush is an ideologue - many of his Left detractors are no better. I like Rae as a practical man looking for solutions rather than an opportunity to advertise ideology (like Howard Hampton, or Jack Layton).

(The "Call him Bob" part refers not to Rae, but rather - me dear olde dad. Gotcha!)

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

On Notice

Test of Leadership Time:

Stephen Harper, you've got exactly 24 hours from right now to do something and do something good about these two clowns Rotor and Tipple eating at a certain trough funded by my taxes, or else I'm going to have to get used to jaded cynicism. And who wants that?

I'm a fair man - I'm happy to give the PM time to act before I judge. I'm not going to blame him personally for the cock-up, but I'll of course blame him if he doesn't take some action.

This is not a victimless crime - this is a deliberate abuse of public money. And further, it's a sign of a too heavily-funded government with too much money to spare. Something has just clicked in my head and changed me, as of this evening. I'm mad as hell and I'm not going to take it anymore. I used to begrudge but accept taxes in Canada - for some reason, I've snapped over this. It's just sunk in that they are swimming in more money than they know what to do with.

I'm emailing the PMO. 24 hours to act - starting.... NOW.

Who the fuck is Alexandre Trudeau?

Apparently, he and Sacha are never in the same room at the same time. And here I thought there was suddenly a fourth son I'd somehow never heard of before....

Granted, growing up with a guy giving your baby brother piggyback rides can skew your view - if Garrett Poppe were hauled in and charged as an evil dictator, I'd be quick to jump in and say, "Geez, he was so nice to us as kids," but this is hero worship. I expected him to go into, "Castro's lean and toned muscles prowled beneath his tanned and tight skin like a tiger surveying his jungle, and as his manly gaze fixed on me, I knew that this night would be unlike any other before".

PS No one wants to read about the progeny of James Bond or Batman. Are Canadians really desperate enough to pay attention to Ben Mulroney and these kids? I'd really much rather have Mulroney, Sr. back, and that's the truth.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Still the same old Joe

" “I haven’t changed. Events around me have changed.” - Joe Lieberman


This "withdrawal" and "redeployment" talk is sometimes silly, and often insane. I was against the Iraq War, favouring focus on Bin Laden and Iran, but now that the war is on - it can't be walked away from.

The war is failing, and has been for a long time. The plan to win it has not changed. Lieberman's fatal error was to defend it, and not to support the effort but demand a change in direction. Had he called on Bush to find new blood, and called on Rumsfeld to resign, had he fought not to pretend the war was okay but rather to win the war, he'd have won - unchallenged. He failed in his duty as a Senator - when the events changed, he stayed the same.

Just my two cents.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Strange Bedfellows

Many on the Left have taken an anti-Israeli stance in discussing the Middle East conflict. Here's a sampling of (negative) comments from one lone thread on Left news site Raw Story.

- why don't they just load the lebanese up in cattle cars for transportation to their demise. well, no, it would not be economically feasible.

- the israeli are the nazi killing machine of old and this war mongering group has zero sympathy from me althougth sometime in the distant past they did

- Israel should enjoy its last few remaining days of military superiority, because once Iran gets Nukes, they won't be so apt to kill civilians and wreak havoc on the infrastructure of their neighbors.

- mel speaks the truth !!!

- Israel MURDERS 900 Civilians
Israel = NAZI

- once Iran gets atomic all the killing of innocence will stop

- Israel is a terrorist state. US interests are now better served if Israel ceased to exist. Israel (and US support for it) is the problem.

- Typical Republichimp, he thinks it is okay for Israelis to kill civilians. And Hezbollah is NOT putting their launchers next to civilians. That's a lie from Israel.

What happened? Cheering on Iran's nuclear program? Calling Israelis "Nazis"? Or "terrorists"? What happened to the Left?

You'll find many pro-Israel comments as well - I'm not asking about the entire Left.

But how can so many who believe in, say, abortion, gay marriage, equality of women, and separation of church and state possibly be siding with fundamentalist radical Islamists? You want decriminiIization of marijuana, so you side with people who cane pot smokers outside mosques? I know politics can make for odd match-ups, but is going against Bush really *that* important to some?

I've wondered if Conservative governments in Israeli history have made many on the Left instinctively stand against them. I've wondered if possibly this is a hasty knee-jerk reaction to support the underdog - because as anyone can tell you, the Left loves an underdog (but then, doesn't everyone). But I don't know. Any ideas? Why are so many individuals on the Left so vehemently anti-Israel?

Thursday, August 03, 2006

And now, I shower

What the...!?

Stephen Lewis is married to Michele Landsberg? Is the father of Avi Lewis? Has not disowned said son for marrying Naomi Klein??

This family is toxic poison ivy on the thighs of the Left. Jesus, where is Ed Broadbent when you need a thinking and realistic Leftist?

I used to like Stephen talking on CBC. I feel like I fucked a cougar and then found out she was secretly J. Edgar Hoover.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

The un-UN

I actually wonder if it's possibly time - and man, it is *not* easy for me to say this - I think it might be time to possibly close down the UN. We should form a new UN, with membership restricted to democracies only. China can be invited and showered with welcomes when the issue involves a use for China - Iran and Cuba and North Korea and Libya et al can be communicated with. But no non-democracy should ever carry a vote, or especially a veto, on what democracies plan or need or want.

I know, I know - sometimes the US or Canada or anyone else want to pillage someone's copper mines or fruit fields. The UN doesn't deal in that.

I think it's great that we have a UN - but dammit, it just doesn't work to let these countries have an equal voice to ours on international affairs.

Monarchies with an elected head of government (with fair elections), that's okay, I guess.

Well - maybe we could keep the UN, but also set up a United Democracies. Like belonging to Mousketeers and the Roy Rogers Club at the same time. "The U.D." doesn't have the right ring to it, admittedly.