Question Time! “Warren, are you going to the Liberal convention thing?”

Answer!

“Quite a few of you have asked me this, and God knows why. But, no.

One, I’m too busy at work and with my kids.

Two, I don’t understand the Liberal party’s insistence on having conventions in the dead of winter, in the coldest parts of the country. It’s stupid.

Three, one of Trudeau’s senior advisers contacted a campaign with which I may or may not be associated, and suggested there would be…consequences. Apparently they were upset about the column I wrote about the move they made in the Senate. I am not making this up.

Good thing I don’t write a politics column in the biggest newspaper chain in the country, etc.”


Thornhill and Niagara Falls: check the second-to-last paragraph

The rule I have always followed is this: in any letter or email, the message being conveyed is always contained in the second-to-last paragraph. The first part is just throat-clearing and the end part is just sign-off.

So, too stories about polling, it seems. The way I read it, the Star has finally figured out it look’s like a horse’s ass pimping all those Forum “Research” polls – the accuracy of which are discussed here and here – and they’re now hedging their bets. Thus, the second-to-last paragraph:

“Like most polling firms, Forum uses a proprietary weighting formula, which has been shared with the Star, to more accurately reflect the broader electorate. Raw data from this poll will be housed in the Political Science Data Library at the University of Toronto.”

So, if you want to see how wildly they’re off this time, you’d better start your trek through the snow to U of T, you hear?

Anyway. After talking to various pollsters and politicos, your Free Warren Poll™ is this:

  • The Wynne Liberals are in third place in North, Southwestern Ontario and Eastern Ontario, and have been for some time;
  • The chances of the Hudak PCs losing Thornhill, when the Libs bizarrely called the by-election at the same Stephen Harper was in Israel,  are somewhere between slim and none;
  • The Board are doing to the Ontario Liberals what they did ten years ago to the federal Liberals;
  • The Hudak PCs, like the Wynne Liberals, are now both attacking the Horwath NDP in paid and earned, which tells you all you need to know; and
  • The Wynne Liberal pollster has told cabinet that all they can now hope to hold is fortress Toronto, but they can hold onto government, if they pick up a few GTA seats – which is more on crack that Rob Ford is.

This Free Warren Poll™ is completely 100 per cent accurate, 20 times out of 20.  You’re welcome.

 

 


Gary McHale’s lawsuit against me is thrown out of court!

A month ago, I told you I had some great legal news, but my legal counsel – Brian Shiller, who hasn’t lost me one case yet – told me to be silent about it for a month.  So, uncharacteristically, I have done so.

McHale’s action has been tossed out of court! More on Gary here and here and here. Tells all you need to know.

Thousands in donations were received from many of you, for which I am so grateful.  After legal costs are paid out, I intend to donate the remainder to the Six Nations, who have opposed McHale’s “activism” for years.

And, for you to clip and save, here’s the dismissal order. Have a swell day, Gary!


Fear of labour

This is what happens when you let Randy Hiller write your labour policy, Mr. Hudak.

Full disclosure: I practiced labour law, union side.  I’ve represented plenty of unions over the years, radical and otherwise.  So I have a tendency to think Hudak’s strategy – like his anti-foreigner strategy in 2011 – might work in a Southern U.S. state, but not ever in Ontario.  It’s nuts.

He’s not the only one making a strategic error, however.  The Ontario Liberals have been seeding revelations about Hudak’s misguided policy with the media for a few days, now.  They assume that they alone are the natural beneficiary of the controversy.

They’re wrong.  If the ballot question in this Spring’s provincial election becomes the role of organized labour in Ontario, the beneficiary will be Horwath’s NDP.

In two-party campaigns, effective attacks will usually suppress your opponent’s vote, and mobilize your own.  But in a three-way race, think before you attack: the one who gains may not always be you.

 

 


Fare thee well, Heenan Blaikie

Story here.

The winding down of this fabled firm – where I was for a fun get-together just a couple weeks ago – is sad, but not unprecedented.  Goodman and Carr went the same way, a few years ago, for a lot of the same reasons.  Nothing lasts forever, including law firms.

The reasons, as I’ve posted in the past, are not unique to Heenan or Goodman.  Big law firms are dying, much in the way that big media firms are – because of bad management decisions, because of resistance to change, and because of a total underestimation of the impact that the Internet would have on what they do.  I left the day-to-day practice of law, in a law firm, a decade ago, and I haven’t regretted my decision once.  Meanwhile, most lawyers I know, like most politicians I know, are totally miserable.

Oh, and my friend who had an office at Heenan’s in Ottawa? Don’t worry about him for one solitary minute.  He has a name that is much, much bigger than any single law firm.

 


Sexism and statecraft, plus a postscript about manufactured outrage

I’m a big fan of Michelle Rempel and Megan Leslie.  If you’ve been paying attention, the two of them – aided and abetted by Liberals outside the Commons, like this person, as here and here – have been challenging sexism inside the Commons, whatever the source.

The attack on Liberal Chrystia Freeland was pretty stupid. Tory Rempel and New Democrat Leslie immediately got involved, as seen here. Kudos to them both.

As I remarked to my partner last night, this sort of stuff seems to be happening on a daily basis.  Just the day before, Ditherer-in-Chief John Tory was blaming women for their inability to get better pay, and suggesting they take up golf to get ahead in their careers.

(Parenthetical Possibly Related Bit: Is there a statute of limitations on dumb sexist remarks? Well, when I retweeted some of the stuff women were saying about Tory, the dishonest Conservative MPP shouter, Lisa MacLeod, tried to get in the story, and once again raised the admittedly dumb, thoughtless and stupid “baking cookies” cartoon I posted on this web site seven years ago, and for which I apologize a couple times in every intervening year (and out of which MacLeod tries to make a buck).  What MacLeod didn’t post, however, was her July 27, 2007 text to me, wherein she called my dumb joke “funny” and that she thought she resembled “Betty Crocker,” quote unquote. Do politicians ever say they’re outraged in public, and are anything but in private? Say it ain’t so!)