Grit nominations: what is news and what isn’t

To suggest that Justin Trudeau has repeatedly broken his promise to have open nominations – in his very first speech as leader, no less – isn’t in any way news. His promise has been broken so many times – here and here and here, inter alia – it is farcical. I do not know a single Liberal outside Trudeau’s insular inner circle who is prepared to argue otherwise.

Trudeau’s “open nominations” are neither – neither open, nor nominations. They are stealth appointments. But that, as I say, isn’t news.

What’s news is The Huffington Post’s apparent belief that anonymous sources can always be counted upon to testify in the event of a libel action. Check this out, from their story:

“Party officials acknowledged that Edmonton–Mill Woods resident Varinder Bhullar was not their preferred candidate…

“The man cheated. He was caught. And it was a pretty flagrant violation,” a Liberal party official said, insisting on anonymity.”

Back at the beginning of time, when I was a litigator and practiced a bit of libel law, this is what I would ask editors of publications like HuffPo:

  • Is the anonymous source reliable?
  • Is he or she motivated by malice, and using us?
  • Is what he or she saying true?
  • In the event of a libel action, can the anonymous source be counted on to testify for us?

There’s a reason why anonymous sources prefer to be anonymous: they want to say critical (and oftentimes defamatory) things with impunity.

HuffPo, you surprise me.  Hope you have a great legal team.


Comments, vomments

That’s what Raymi calls the really nasty ones – vomments. Fits.

Got a really nasty one from someone who has apparently been nursing a grievance for 30 years. Thirty years! Tried to write them to respond. But the email was fake, and the email address too. Cowards are as cowards do, I guess.

Reminded me of this from Arianna Huffington, when she banned anonymous comments on HuffPo. Maybe I should do likewise.

“Freedom of expression is given to people who stand up for what they’re saying and not hiding behind anonymity.”


The 2015 ballot question explained, gratis

A light just went on in my tiny cranium.

Whichever way things go, the Conservative narrative comes out a winner. Things going great? You can only credit Harper. Things really suck? Only Harper has the experience to get us back on track.

It’s evil genius, but genius, no less. Comments welcome, per usual.


63 per cent of Canadians are traitors

When I told one of the advisers to Justin Trudeau why I supported the International effort against ISIS/ISIL – and when I pointed out that I agreed with right-wing extremist warmongers like Barack Obama, Lloyd Axworthy and Bob Rae – I was told Messrs. Axworthy, Rae et al. were “traitors” to the party, because they’d disagreed with the leader. That’s a quote.

I guess us traitors can be comforted with the news that we’re not entirely alone. Here’s hoping we all get a big cell with a window!


Go hard left, then go hard right

Either way, it’s veering all over the road.

The anti-terror legislation isn’t tabled, yet, so no one outside a small circle within the government actually knows what is in it. Even though I – along with Lloyd Axworthy, Bob Rae, Gen. Romeo Dallaire and many other Liberals – support the international effort against ISIS/ISIL, I’m not ready to support the government’s bill until I, you know, actually see it.

If all of this seems a bit familiar to you, it should. In 2003, Jean Chretien said “no” to Canadian involvement in George W. Bush’s misadventures in Iraq. Paul Martin objected to that, letting it be known that “Canada should be there” and Canada needed to “get over to Iraq as quickly as possible.” So, when the latter became Prime Minister, he sought to curry favour with the Americans by committing us to Kandahar. It was a costly decision.

Siding with the NDP on the war against terror in the Middle East, siding with the Conservatives on the war against terror back home: it recalls Tim Hudak’s promise to create a million jobs, and then fire 100,000 people. Among other things, that kind of politicking is confusing to voters.

On important stuff, like war and terrorism, it is important to be consistent. The Conservatives, for good or for bad, are being consistent with their values. So too the NDP, whether you agree with them or not.

The Liberals? Like I say, going from hard left to hard right isn’t a safe way to drive. It often results in you landing in a ditch.


The enlightened world of gaming

I have never played a video game. Never. I just never got the hang of it, or was too busy, or whatever. It looked stupid, frankly.

I bought my sons video games, however. I could tell the games were violent, of course, because they all are. But I told them that I would never buy them games like Grand Theft Auto, which contained sexual violence. And I didn’t.

Having now read what one feminist experienced when she pointed out the sexism found in many video games, however, has me wondering whether I should just pick up the Xbox and throw it in the trash.

I have written a couple books about hate groups, but what this feminist writer experienced easily rivals what I saw when I was researching those books. You can find what she received, in just one week, here. Apologies, in advance, if it disgusts you. It certainly disgusted me.