“Warren Kinsella's book, ‘Fight the Right: A Manual for Surviving the Coming Conservative Apocalypse,’ is of vital importance for American conservatives and other right-leaning individuals to read, learn and understand.”

- The Washington Times

“One of the best books of the year.”

- The Hill Times

“Justin Trudeau’s speech followed Mr. Kinsella’s playbook on beating conservatives chapter and verse...[He followed] the central theme of the Kinsella narrative: “Take back values. That’s what progressives need to do.”

- National Post

“[Kinsella] is a master when it comes to spinning and political planning...”

- George Stroumboulopoulos, CBC TV

“Kinsella pulls no punches in Fight The Right...Fight the Right accomplishes what it sets out to do – provide readers with a glimpse into the kinds of strategies that have made Conservatives successful and lay out a credible roadmap for progressive forces to regain power.”

- Elizabeth Thompson, iPolitics

“[Kinsella] deserves credit for writing this book, period... he is absolutely on the money...[Fight The Right] is well worth picking up.”

- Huffington Post

“Run, don't walk, to get this amazing book.”

- Mike Duncan, Classical 96 radio

“Fight the Right is very interesting and - for conservatives - very provocative.”

- Former Ontario Conservative leader John Tory

“His new book is great! All of his books are great!”

- Tommy Schnurmacher, CJAD

“I absolutely recommend this book.”

- Paul Wells, Maclean’s

“Kinsella puts the Left on the right track with new book!”

- Calgary Herald


Archive for the ‘Musings’ Category

Mark Critch is an asshole
Saturday, August 27th, 2016

Seriously, he is. 

Here’s what he put up on Twitter. 

So, in his defence, Critch allegedly does comedy. I haven’t ever watched his show or whatever, but I would imagine trying to be funny is hard. (I guess.)

Anyway, on the day Stephen Harper packed it in as an MP, Critch posted the thing above. It’s apparently a joke about Harper hiding in a closet on the day a self-appointed jihadist murdered a Canadian soldier and stormed Parliament Hill, shooting at people. 

I’ve talked about that day with MPs from all parties. All of them say they are still a bit haunted by what happened, and they’ll never forget it. All of them were hiding on the Hill, that day, hoping to avoid getting killed. All of them. 

One said to me afterward: “The shots were really, really loud. They were happening right outside our caucus room door. We didn’t know what was happening, but we knew we could could get shot. We were all texting our families.”

Here’s the thing, Mark Critch comedian guy: if Stephen Harper was in a closet, it’s because the RCMP pushed him in there, you feckless moron. 

I’ve worked for a Prime Minister, and walked around with him on the Hill and off, and I can tell you that’s the RCMP’s  job. Just like that time a bunch of Secret Service agents threw themselves on top of Ronald Reagan to keep him from being shot again, remember? That’s the job. It didn’t look like John Wayne in the movies – all swagger and indifference to bullets flying – but it probably saved the President’s life. 

Stephen Harper, and now Justin Trudeau, didn’t sign up to get killed. They didn’t ever claim to be experts on personal security, either. Leaders and their families deserve every bit of the protection they get, and more. When there’s a real threat, the RCMP take over, not the politicians. 

And if that means the cops have to push the politicians into a fucking closet to protect them from an active shooter, that’s a good thing. They are being smart and brave. 

You, meanwhile, are being an asshole. 

So long, Stephen
Friday, August 26th, 2016

Here’s what I wrote when he started packing up his Hill office.

Good luck!

Adler-Kinsella Show: expense accounts and the so-called alt right 
Friday, August 26th, 2016



It is a sin to despise anyone
Friday, August 26th, 2016

I didn’t say that. God did, in Proverbs 14:21. 

Hillary Clinton’s meticulous, pedantic speech about the sin of Donald Trump’s racism  yesterday – about which many of you sent me emails and text messages, thank you – was a major speech. It was big. Not because of the subject matter – all of us have known for some time that Trump has built his campaign on a foundation of hate. It was extraordinary that, in this day and age, it was a speech that would need to be given in the first place. 

To wit:

1. A major candidate for the office of President of the United States is a proud racist, and he doesn’t hide it. 2. He regularly spews hate. 3. A third of Americans (at least) like what he says. 

Think about that. 

Hillary did, clearly, and she came up with a speech that read like an papal indictment of a blasphemer. It was sermon – thus my invocation of God, at the outset – and it was delivered with barely-controlled clerical fury. No music, no hoopla, just step up to the podium and lay waste to Trump, point by footnoted point. She eviscerated him. 

You can read it all here. You should.
As most of you know, I have been documenting and writing about racism and anti-Semitism and organized hate for more than three decades. I’ve written two books about the subject, Unholy Alliances and Web of Hate. Yesterday, in reaction to Hillary’s speech, most people referenced the latter. But it’s the (lesser-known) former book that is actually more relevant. In that book, I describe how white supremacists and neo-Nazis always devote considerable resources to coming up with a kinder, gentler names for themselves – and how the media are too often suckered into going along. (Back then, they called themselves “the third position.”)

Regrettably, Hillary went on, at some length, about the “alt right” yesterday. You can lose a lot of time trying to define it, which is what it’s adherents want you to do. They are big on semantics. Along with alt right, they variously refer to themselves as nativists, nationalists, populists, and sometimes even white nationalists. 

But they’re just racists. Racists. 

They hate immigration (because it brings in non-whites). They hate the financial system (because it is run by Jews). They hate cultural change (because it has given power to gays and lesbians and others). They hate everyone who isn’t like them, basically. 

Ipso facto, they’re just garden-variety bigots. And, therefore, it’s a mistake to do what Hillary did yesterday – call them “alt right,” when they’re simply “racists.” It’s a mistake to assist them in masking their true purpose. It’s a mistake to assist them in their lie. 

That criticism aside, her speech was one that will be remembered by history. It made me proud of her that she wanted to deliver that anti-racist sermon when she is so far ahead. 

And it made me sad that she needed to. 

Meanwhile, in other news, the world is still flat 
Thursday, August 25th, 2016

Snippet from next week’s expense-account-free column
Thursday, August 25th, 2016

Gratis. No one will listen, however. No one ever listens to me. 


**

Back when he was Liberal leader, I worked for Jean Chrétien.

I was his Special Assistant. I wrote speeches for him, helped out on Question Period, approved his correspondence, stuff like that. I didn’t ever have anything to do with his trips to different parts of Canada, thank God. Other guys did that.

Early on, one story made the rounds in the Office of the Leader of the Opposition, however. All of us heard about it, and we didn’t forget it.

Chrétien was out and about in the hinterland – Northern Ontario, I think, but it doesn’t matter. He and his one assistant clambered off the plane, alighted on the tarmac, and they saw It.

It was a limo.

It stood there, all shiny and big and black, a beaming local Liberal organizer beside it. The local organizer had rented the limo to squire the Liberal leader around during his visit.

Chrétien’s face reddened. The assistant stammered. The local organized frowned.

“We will not get in that,” said the assistant, trying to be as nice as possible. “We will wait here until someone shows up with a Chevy or a car like that, please, one ideally made in Canada.”

“It shouldn’t be fancy.”

There may have been some swear words somewhere in there, too, but this is a family newspaper. Suffice to say that all of us who worked for Jean Chrétien – and all of the local Liberal organizers, too – got the message.

The message, per the political bard (Tip O’Neill, natch), is this: in politics, take the job seriously.

But don’t take yourself seriously.

New York Times: you complete me
Wednesday, August 24th, 2016

When I worked for Jean Chretien in Ottawa, my favourite thing – aside from sitting at The Bosses’ knee, and listening to his war stories, of course – was hanging out on the Summertime Sparks Street mall at lunchtime, eating a hotdog, and reading the New York Times.

Not only was it enjoyable, it changed my life. It was in the pages of the Times, in 1992, that I learned about the “war room” that had been set up by Messrs. Carville and Stephanopoulos and others in Little Rock. I got in touch with them, and the rest is history. The first Canadian political war room in the 1993 election, in which we did alright. 

Since then, my love for the Times has never diminished. It is, in fact, the only newspaper to which Lisa and I subscribe. 

Why? Here’s why. 

  • It values its writers, and it shows. 
  • It tells great stories. Stories matter. 
  • It contains the best writing you can find for the price. 
  • It is smart and treats its readers like they’re smart, too. 
  • It is ethical and progressive and never reckless. 

So, that is why I am so, so happy to read this news: the New York Times is expanding in Canada. Wow. 

See that, guild of vampires who run Postmedia? That’s how to succeed in the newspaper business: get the best writers, print the best stories. 

Oh, and heed this, politicians: this will be a game-changer for you, too. You won’t like it. 

Two years and a day ago
Tuesday, August 23rd, 2016

And what a day it was. 

We get letters: stinky spin
Tuesday, August 23rd, 2016

I love this one. 

This week’s column: my new partisan affiliation
Tuesday, August 23rd, 2016

BOSTON – I am a Democrat.

Philosophically, ideologically, emotionally: the political party I belong to, in my head and my heart, is the Democratic Party of the United States. And if I still lived Stateside, that’s the party I would be voting for, and the party I would be working for, 24/7. (Full disclosure: my wife and I are, in fact, volunteering on Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign this Summer and Fall in both Maine and New York.)

This isn’t to say, however, that I’m not still a Liberal Party supporter, or that I don’t think the Conservative Party or the New Democratic Party often have good ideas and good people. Notwithstanding their quirks and peccadilloes, I like Canadian partisans a lot. They’re passionate, intelligent, motivated folks – whether they be Grit, Tory or Dipper. They make a difference.

But, if we’re being honest with ourselves, the three main Canadian political parties aren’t all that different. They possess distinctions without differences. Case in point: the 2015 Canadian election campaign – when the New Democrats (with balanced budgets and billion-dollar budgets for defence) moved Right, the Liberals (with deficit spending and pulling out of the ISIS fight) moved Left, and the Conservatives (with their willingness to boot out any candidate who dared raise the topics of abortion or gay marriage) moved away from what they had once been.  

In 2015, and before, you needed a magnifying glass to detect dissimilarities between the Canadian political parties. The 2015 campaign was about personalities, not policy, and Justin Trudeau won because he had a nicer personality than the other two guys.

Not so here in the U.S. Here, there is true political clarity. Here, the contrasts are real and readily-seen. Here, there is (and usually is) a clear choice between two starkly-opposed political polarities.

Up in Canada, all of the Canadian political parties often become indistinguishable when they win the privilege of power. In government, they really aren’t all that different. Bob Rae’s New Democrats (appropriately) imposed austerity measures when they ran things in Ontario, Rachel Notley’s NDP enthusiastically (appropriately) supports pipelines and the Oil Patch, and Stephen Harper’s Conservatives (appropriately) spent like drunken sailors in the aftermath of the 2008-2009 global recession. And Justin Trudeau’s Liberals (belatedly, but correctly) decided they’d been wrong about ISIS, and have committed Canada to something Harper never, ever did – troops on the ground, in harm’s way.

But here in the U.S.? The Democrats and the Republicans approach governing very differently. The former believe government can be a force for good, and the latter simply don’t. The aforementioned 2008-2009 global recession came about precisely because Republicans eliminated government’s ability to regulate Wall Street’s excesses. Democrats, meanwhile, proudly used government power and spending to clean up the GOP’s mess.

In the U.S., they don’t pussyfoot around with Orwellian Newspeak, like Canadians do on the issue of abortion. Up in Canada, we prattle on about “choice” and play semantic games, calling one side “pro-life” and the other “pro-choice,” so that they almost sound like they believe in the same thing. South of the border, the issue is “abortion,” and you are either for it (like the Democrats always are) or you are against it (like the Republicans always are). I’m for it. Abortion should be safe, rare and legal.

In the U.S., Democrats don’t like capital punishment, and the Republicans do. But Democrats – like me – believe that sometimes the state is entitled to apply the ultimate penalty. When there is guilt beyond a reasonable doubt – in the case of Paul Bernardo, say, who tortured and raped and murdered children on film – Democrats reluctantly accept that capital punishment can and should be applied. I do, too.

In the U.S., Democrats don’t particularly like war, while Republicans think it is the solution to every problem. But, unlike in Canada – where our defence capacity has been underfunded and underwhelming for generations, through successive governments of all stripes, and where we depend on other nations to maintain our national defence – Democrats are unafraid to use military might when diplomacy fails.  

Thus, Hillary Clinton pushed for the assassination of Osama bin Laden, Bill Clinton led the military effort to stop the Bosnian genocide, and Barack Obama has raised military spending to historic highs – comparatively higher than it was during Ronald Reagan’s Cold War buildup, in fact. Under Obama, for example, Obama’s “surge” of U.S. troops in Afghanistan was double what it was under George W. Bush. Democrats aren’t wimps.

It’s worth noting, at his point, that most Canadians mostly agree with the Democratic position on all of the stuff above. An Ipsos poll showed in February that six in ten Canadian favour abortion “in any circumstances.” For years, in poll after poll, an equivalent number of Canadians – about two-thirds – support the death penalty. And various surveys over the past decade show slightly fewer Canadians support more or stable defence spending – about half. 

But, when it comes to taking on the likes of ISIS, as many as three in four Canadians opposed Trudeau’s promise to withdraw from the anti-ISIS bombing mission. And nearly as many want to see more resources devoted to the anti-ISIS fight.

See? I may be Democrat, but the majority of Canadians are, too. 

Liberals, Conservatives, and New Democrats, take note.