02.16.2012 01:46 AM

Canada Live, Feb. 15: Ottawa gets uglier

Read this one on air. If a certain Ottawa City Councillor aide isn’t careful, he’s going to get linked to this disgusting targeting of Toews’ family.


  1. Iris Mclean says:

    Didn’t this Toews @sshole just publicly declare that those who oppose C-30 support child pornography?
    That’s getting pretty godamn personal, and offensive.

  2. Jan says:

    As far as I am concerned Toews deserves any sliming he gets. If you’re going to preach morality to everyone else, you better not have any skeletons in your closet.

    • Reality.Bites says:

      Toews has devoted his life to vicious gay-bashing, doing everything he possibly could to deprive gays and lesbians of every possible right under the law.

      There is absolutely NOTHING that could ever happen to him that would move me to the remotest sympathy. He devoted his career to trying to hurt total strangers. Unlike the bastard’s victims, he’s earned what’s happening to him.

  3. smelter rat says:

    The Reformacons have taken to sliming anyone they see as an “enemy of the state” since 2005.Turnabout is fair play. Fuck them.

    • Warren says:

      Sorry, but I don’t quite see what pulling Vic Toews’ children and partners into this achieves – other than making those who do so look like scumbags.

      • Bob says:

        Hey they went after my family first. They want my niece and nephew’s e-mail addresses! No Warren scum is hiding behind the children.

  4. John Baglow says:

    If Toews is going to run on “family values” and get all sanctimonious with us, promote himself as a man of utter rectitude while the rest of us, standing with the child pornographers, apparently need to be tailed–then his own private life, including his staggering hypocrisy, is fair game.

    Let he who is without sin cast the first stone. That old reprobate has been throwing stones for some time. Now it’s his turn.

    • Warren says:

      John, that’s what conservatives said when they went after me and my family. Were they right?

    • Blackhawksfan says:

      Isn’t that expression meant to discourage stone throwing (don’t attack others for their mistakes unless you have never made one)?

      I like the expression and am unsure how it suddenly turned into “that fucker threw a stone, let’s drop a boulder on him.”

      • Robbie says:

        The saying originates from a verse in John 8. The religious leaders presented Jesus with a woman caught in the act of adultery. They cited that the penalty for adultery under Mosaic Law was death by stoning. Jesus, however, realized they were more concerned with trying to entrap and accuse Him so as to gain political advantage; and they were far less interested in trying to keep the Law as an observance of personal piety.

        It was very much a political situation as a religious one. He called them on their hypocrisy, though, by revealing that each of them, in their own right, were sinners, hence the line “he that is without sin be the first to cast a stone.” What I always find intriguing about this story is the whereabouts of the man with whom she was committing adultery. Why was he not presented to Jesus for judgement? Go read what it means that I desire mercy and not sacrifice, for I came not to call the righteous but sinners (Matthew 9:13)

  5. John Baglow says:

    Two different situations. Of course they weren’t right in your case. But Toews is a public figure who ran on”family values.” Surely his hypocrisy is an issue.

    By way of analogy, I don’t care whether GOP hacks and fundy preachers have gay encounters–unless they have publicly campaigned against “the homosexual lifestyle.” Again, the issue here is hypocrisy.

    One final point. Toews tried to spearhead a bill to invade the privacy of all Canadians, while smearing his critics as supporters of child pornographers. He’s now being taught a short, sharp lesson in what privacy means. Turnabout is fair play.

  6. Lisa says:

    This is wrong, and just another step to us becoming like the Americans. In the end, talking about politicians personal lives distracts from the real issues.

    I think Justin Trudeau also made a huge mistake. Very disappointed in his decision to tweet this stuff.

  7. que sera sera says:

    I applaud Vikileaks actions.

    For demonstrably stupid people it is best to demonstrate why their actions speak louder than their mealy-mouthed words.

    Vikileaks demonstration seems to have done the trick for the first time since the Conservatives painted the town “ugly” and topped themselves by calling Canadian taxpayers “child pornographers”.

    The LPC should be taking notes.

  8. Michael says:

    The details of his family life and divorce should not have been made public.

    What should have been made public was his internet browsing history.

    • Tim Sullivan says:

      Toews’ family law file is a public document. Openess of the courts and access to justice demand that when private disputes are put to the public through the courts, the public has the right to attend, review and know what is in issue for the court to decide.

      Toews’ documents are public because his dispute is public, in court. There are ways to keep this stuff private. Toews is a lawyer and former prosecutor. He knows the rules and what can be made of the documents filed in court.

      • Warren says:

        There are no ways to “keep this stuff private.” You are making things up.

        • Tim Sullivan says:

          Warren, let’s watch the wild accusations. I do this stuff daily, and there are ways to “keep this stuff private”, if by “stuff” I mean the positions of separating parties and the terms of the agreement. There is private mediation, arbitration or simple negotiations, at the kichen table or through the parties with or without lawyers, which lead to a separation agreement. None of those are public forums.

          It it is in court, one may also make a motion to keep the file sealed, but rare is the chance of sucess for that.

          • Warren says:

            The process, unless it’s closed mediation, is public.

          • Tim Sullivan says:

            Not in Ontario.

            In fact, the only public dispute resolution is court by commencing or responding to a Family Court Application. All other manners of dispute resolution are private, in my experience.

  9. Geoffrey Hall, Former Ignatieff Staffer says:


    • Warren says:

      [Mr. Hall, who works for an Ottawa City councillor, has made a legal threat about my objection to his willingness to dig into family law files, and hurt innocent parties as he does so. Until that is resolved, Mr. Hall is unwelcome here.]

  10. Rene Gauthier says:

    Would Vic Toews be the kind of guy who enjoys babysitter porn? All of a sudden the sickf#ck meter just went off the scale! And hey! #DontToewsMeBro!

  11. que sera sera says:

    The moral of the story is if you stand around contemplating the finer points of the Marquis of Queensbury rules whilst in a physical altercation with a professionally dirty gutter fighter, you lose.

    I suspect the LPC could explain it much better than I.

  12. Clive says:

    Let’s not forget that this is a minister who has accused a very large portion of his own party base, in which I count myself, of “standing with child pornographers.” This kind of snooping legislation is deeply un-Conservative and I haven’t found a single Tory in my circle of friends who supports it. Toews words are way, way out of line. That doesn’t justify the intrusion into his ex-wife’s personal life, or his children’s, but I agree with Michael, his internet browsing history would be fair game.

    I have written to express my disgust at his remarks and advise him to change his tune on this or risk losing a very significant number of votes, and I know lots of other Tories have done the same.

    • Warren says:

      The logic of this seems to be: “We don’t like what he’s doing, so we are going to drag his children and family into this to teach him a lesson.”

      I don’t see the logic in that. It’s pathetic, in fact.

  13. John Baglow says:

    When a politician makes “the sanctity of marriage” his political platform, attacking SSM and praising the institution of heterosexual marriage to the skies, he has made the personal political and the political personal. Had he kept his mouth shut instead of lecturing us all about morality, then I agree that his own personal life would be off-limits.

    But he laid himself wide-open to the blowback. And, incidentally, all the info on him was already public record, not acquired with the warrantless taps and probes he wants for everyone else.

    All this hand-wringing is charming, but irrelevant. The man was punkd by his own hand, and richly deserves what he’s getting.

    • Skinny Dipper says:

      The Conservative Party has demonstrated that its supporters will fight below the belt. There is no honour among the so-called honorable Conservative Members of Parliament. They have called groups and individuals who oppose the HarperGovernment(TM) policies “enemies of Canada” and “extremists.”

  14. GPAlta says:

    Why he was divorced is no one’s business, but if he really is a deadbeat dad, he should be considered a lawbreaker, a menace, and he should be forced to resign. Failure to support children is one of the most corrosive and cruel antisocial behaviors in Canada, and this might be an opportunity to discuss who is really tough on crime.

  15. Johnny Tuna says:

    While my higher reasoning functions tell me that this is bad, my lizard brain nonetheless derives pleasure from it: I am at the saturation point for stomaching hypocrisy, especially when combined with overt bullying. I also think all the bile is being directed at Toews, not his unfortunate ex-spouse. However, until I am shown otherwise, this was not a political ad, nor was it orchestrated by a political party or media outlet. It was an anonymous twitter feed, posting publicly available – lawfully publicly available material. It is not even rumour. Manitoba has, apparently, very liberal access to information laws: http://www.manitobacourts.mb.ca/pdf/access_policy_final.pdf

    I find that surprisingly accessible.

  16. Tiger says:

    What this risks doing is getting rid of the Canadian cease-fire — politicians’ personal lives have been off-limits to the press.

    That used to be the case Stateside, before the 1970s.

    I _like_ the Canadian cease-fire — I’ll laugh in private over bits of gossip I hear about, but we deal with substance in our headlines, not tawdry private stuff.

    Or we did till now.

    Well, if everything becomes fair game, we’re going to see a data-dump of sex scandals about lots and lots of pols, soon enough. I’d rather we didn’t.

    • que sera sera says:

      I suspect when the MSM stopped reporting news and quit investigative journalism, chosing instead to become a 24/7 receptacle for Conservative press releases and Government of Canada ad revenues, people’s interests have rightfully switched from the possibility of any serious discussion of political issues of the day to the hilariously messy prurient gossip about well paid hypocrisy.

      I suspect the day MSM decides to act like a Fifth Estate and not an extension of the PMO’s communication department will actually be the day social media isn’t relied upon to report the news about the politicians that are slandering taxpayers.

      • Bubba says:

        Wow – seriously dude i’d go back on your medication if i were you. The sins of the father do not deserve to be visited upon the sons – especially by frothing-at-the-mouth raving loonies such as yourself. As a conservative (small-c, definitely not big-C), i completely agree with the criticisms of Toew’s comments but any sympathy toward the liberal position goes right out the window when people such as yourself can’t get your head around the idea that no child deserves to be bullied in order that political points are scored.

        • que sera sera says:

          Bit of a stretch there, Bubba. I’m not a child pornographer, either.

          When did it become a plank in the CPC “family values” platform to hold Canadian citizens to account – in lieu of the father – for the father’s behavior towards his own children ?

          It really is shameless that the entire Conservative party has embraced the nasty habit of hiding behind women and children, including abused children, to avoid being held to account for their outlandish & disgusting behavior.

        • Tiger says:

          Re que sera sera’s comment — I think it proves my point.

          The ceasefire may be ending.


          • Philip says:

            I doubt that ceasefire will be ending soon. There is a reason why there are 13+ pages of escort services in the Ottawa phone book. No party wants that can of worms opened.

          • Tiger says:

            Philip — I thought that, but just look at this thread.

            It just takes a few staffers and one politician to feel the way they do, and then all bets are off.

          • Philip says:

            You might be right on that, Tiger. I hope you aren’t. I have no desire to see Canadian politics descend into a false piety competition where every misstep is dragged out to be judged in the public square.

            I do think alot of nastiness towards Toews, from all political stripes, stems from a collective sense that he crossed the line with his comment. Nobody should have to chose between supporting a horribly invasive piece of legislation or child pornography. My sense is that this is one off smack down of the village asshole, rather than a larger trend.

  17. Anne Peterson says:

    I think no one has been dirtier than the conservatives. They trashed Judy Sgro. The helped themselves win an election by accusing Ralph Goodale. They lied about Stephane Dion and spread false rumours about Michael Ignatieff and they thought that was OK. They have used every dirty nasty trick in the book including spending my money on hirelings to make pro Harper comments on all the media forums. And now they are calling environmentalists extremist threats. Can’t say I’m really sad about the Vic Toews lesson going on here. Sometimes you do reap what you sow.

  18. Michael S says:

    Unfortunately Warren, for the first time since i started reading your site, i must disagree with you. These “Conservatives” have lowered the level of politics, and everything associated with it. This is the way they started playing since Harper returned to the scene. Are we headed towards American style politics? Dude, we’re already there. Vic Tazer and company deserve everything they get.

    • Domenico says:

      Yes sadly we Liberals are still using a playbook long since abandoned by the Cons. We win the moral high ground and lose elections.

      • MCBellecourt says:

        …and, as long as we keep losing elections, we will keep on losing our country. It’s no longer a civil debate between parties. The Conservatives have declared war on all those who disagree with them, and turning the other bum cheek ain’t gonna cut it anymore.

        Sad state of affairs, this. But it’s come to “ya gotta do what ya gotta do”.

        Get rid of the Harper party, and we can then begin the restoration process. We’re Canadians and that says we can restore order in Parliament, and the work can begin as soon as we clean house.

        Bring. It. On.

  19. Carol says:

    Hello Everyone,

    On one level, the polite one I use when I want to give someone the benefit of a doubt, I agree with Warren. But I cannot be the only one to have noticed how nasty our political discourse had become, and how much the Cons love the personal attack. Sadly, the voters respond to these personal attacks…which is why the Cons continue to use them.

    The Liberals continue to bring a knife to a gun fight – because we think the average voter has a nobler side. And though some comment was made above about dragging his ex-wife, mistress and children into this…the Cons didn’t seem to have any qualms about that when they smeared Stephane Dion or Michael Ignateiff – families are collateral damage on the way to power.

    I think the point has been made…and Vic Toews is being tried in the Court of Public Opinion – This is no different than what will appear on your local newscast when the police start “investigating” you for your suspicious activities online.

  20. Gerry says:

    I don’t know Warren, you’re way smarter than me on all this stuff, but I follow politics all the time and can’t stand the Harper government. They made me an LPC financial supporter. I could be wrong, but I think all this embarrassment and outing as a hypocrite for Toews is awesome! The conservatives are constantly attacking and dissing people, and misinforming, and lying. And now it seems as if the liberal side has woken up and is starting to give some back. High time in my books.

    What the Tories have done to the tone of political discourse in this country is appalling. I hope one of these days harper is gonna fall hard. The people will realize the emperor has no clothes. That he’s not what he’s all cracked up to be, and then he will hopefully fall hard, because there is no personal admiration for that robot in this country.

    • MCBellecourt says:

      That is now the goal. Can we afford to wait for it to happen?

      I think not. Therefore, I have to respectfully disagree with Mr. K. on this as well.

      I’ve been in situations in my working life when diplomacy worked like a charm. I much preferred that. But I have also experienced situations where it was “balls to the wall, boys” and I never backed down. Sometimes you have to get down and dirty–but when I’ve got my back against the wall, the claws will come out, and will only be retracted when the battle is over.

      The Liberal Party can no longer afford to be the “doormat” of the HOC. There is no shame in arming yourself in war–especially when the other guy is hell-bent on slaughtering you–and Stephen Harper has let it be known loud and clear that he intends to DESTROY The Liberal Party.

      And, he and his gang have already demonstrated that they will use any means possible to do just that.

      Remember that.

  21. Neil says:

    I would suggest that Vic Toews richly deserves this. I would say that his ex wife and children in no way deserve this. Thus I agree with you, as much as I am laughing about it I think it is wrong. I also agree with all those who say the LPC continues to bring a knife to a gun fight and that the Cons do this stuff all the time and if we want to win we need to fight back. Unfortunatly if we want to be the GOOD guys we need to act like the good guys and hope that in the end the Canadian people will see too it that the good guys win.
    Yet those who argue hypocrisy should be called out have a point, Rob Anders demonizing gays and the homosexual lifestyle to win election in Calgary West screams out for sunshine. Vic Toews running on family values yet being who he is. So it is hypocrisy that needs to be the issue and hypocrites that need to be called out, but never at the expense of others who did not sign up for the battle.
    Have I been a hypocrite here by saying what I said about Anders while saying it is wrong, I would say No, because I brought no one else in, perhaps I am wrong.

    Ultimatly as much as the state does not belong in the bedrooms of the nation, neither does the nation belong in the bedrooms of state.

  22. Cam Prymak says:

    Focus on what he’s proposed, not what he did.

    Take the high road, the end objective is far more important than anything else.

  23. patrick deberg says:


    Sorry to inform you but the sun headline is misleading. (Like thats a surprise) If you check out the comments boards at the Nat Post you will find the right wing flailing about frothing at the mouth like the rapture’s here over this little nasty surprise was sprung on them. Frankly after the hatchet job done to Dion and Cotler and the covert operations your followers have stealthed in the night like cutting our brake lines and leaving letters to terrify our mothers we tend to keep our heads down. We have been called communists, pedophiles, traitors and the whole kaleidoscope of possibilities open to the conserative mind so many times that it doesn’t phase us anymore. Guess what Gord! The ba$tard child you folks have been raising has come home. He’s smiling knocking on your door and he has his fathers eyes! Go to the beloved Nat Post and see who’s fling poo now !!

  24. frmr disgruntled Con now happy Lib says:

    Will miracles never cease?…..I wonder how much furniture at the PMO needs repair after this backpedalling……or perhaps it was Mr. Toews who didnt want to see any more dirty laundry aired….at any rate, I commend certain members of the Con caucus for growing a pair, and speaking out…..maybe this is the beginning of the Con caucus Arab Spring…….

  25. The Other Jim says:

    I’m getting more than a little chuckle from the commentators who are implying that Warren is an old softie apparently lacking the belly for a “real” fight. Kicking ass, indeed…

    There are two reasons (beyond the aforementioned point that we should raise, not lower the tone) why this sort of personal attack should be avoided:

    1) It distracts from the very real and very important discussion about this bill. The Tories were actually on the ropes after Toews asinine “standing with child pornographers” comment and, for the first time since the last election, it seemed like public input and opposition pressure could influence (if not outright sway) this government. Now debate about the bill itself is taking a backseat to whether Toews is a “victim” or getting his just desserts.

    2) IT DOESN’T WORK. See Ford, Robert or Gingrich, Newt. If anything, these sort of attacks can have the opposite of the desired effect in that they energize the most rabid portions of the politician’s base (to “protect their guy against the loony left”). Plus, in 2012, the average voter seems to assume that most (all?) politicians are scumbags (not my personal opinion) and learning that an individual politician acted like bufoons/cads/douchebags in their personal lives seems to go in one ear and out the other.

    So, what has Vikileaks accomplished? It has distracted from the real issue, helped circle the troops around Toews (after his huge self-inflicted screw-up), and caused embarrassment to his family (whom I suspect already knew that he was an ass). Can’t say I really see the upside there.

    • sharonapple88 says:


      Hey, if you’re looking to protest C30, how about making it absolutely unnecessary by telling Vic everything. Join the fun with #tellviceverything. 😀

    • Philip says:

      I would argue that Newt Gingrich might have a different take on this issue. While his ex-wife’s accusations were too late to impact the South Carolina vote, they certainly impacted the vote in Florida. Newt’s support tanked among women and married women in Florida, according to the CNN exit polls. Whether true or not it did raise further questions Republican’s minds about Newt into Nevada and beyond.

      The Vikileaks will have an impact on Toews. It’s hard to imagine him as a senior level cabinet minister now. The guy is a punch line now and that is hard to come back from.

      • The Other Jim says:

        Philip – That’s not my reading of the polls. Gingrich’s support surged after the ABC report and, particularly, after the debate when the opening question asked about his ex-wife. I believe that it was a significant factor in his winning the primary.

        • Philip says:

          Agreed. In South Carolina, the ABC interview pushed Newt over the top. I would argue that it gave him a slightly larger margin of victory then he would have had otherwise. I think Newt’s poor showing in Nevada was a direct result of the ABC interview.
          To some extent, this sort of thing is self-perpetuating. If enough Republicans think that Newt would suffer among women voters in a general election, they would be less likely to vote for him in a primary. If Newt falls below expectations in enough primaries, then more Republicans might not look at Newt to defeat Obama in the fall.

  26. Philip says:

    Are we still pretending that Lorrie Goldstien is an actual journalist or has that been given up as a bad job?

  27. Niall says:

    Hi Warren,

    You are right on this one, no question (and I’m not surprised at all that you feel the way you do, which, I think, reflects well on your character).

    CBC radio here in Winnipeg ran a report yesterday that featured an interview with a well know (far) Left political commentator in which she gleefully rejoiced in the public shaming of Mr. Toews. In response I wrote them this letter.

    “Re: Vic Toews’ Divorce

    Maybe child-rearing practices were different in your “progressive” households but when I was a little boy my Mum always said that if you can’t say anything nice then don’t say anything at all.
    Which brings me to your unbelievable radio news story this morning.
    One might have expected the narrative to center on the utter inappropriateness of anyone so shockingly trespassing on the entirely reasonable right to maintain some bare minimum standard of privacy as a political figure, and express moral outrage at the hacker who despoiled Mr. Toew’s marital situation for yet unclear motivations.
    Well, apparently NOT.
    At least not if you are a vicious partisan ethical garden gnome.
    Don’t know about you but if these painful details were being hacked and released about, say, John Harvard (a former Liberal MP) , this Conservative Winnipegger would be, rightfully, disgusted at the offence to his dignity.
    But not you guys: No, for you the leaks were a joyous and happy occasion to gleefully pile onto the Federal Minister, for God knows what graceless purpose.
    While we can admit of differences of opinion on Bill C-30, we should never use some sordid tawdry personal smear as a misguided tool to further any right (or left) political agenda.
    All public servants deserve this much, at least.
    Yours truly,
    Niall Mackintosh

  28. smelter rat says:

    Nothing was “hacked”. It’s all public domain information. Nice try though.

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