The Targets: God-Like Geniuses

Last night SFH played at Mitzi’s Sister and raised a couple hundred bucks for Chilean earthquake relief. A fine time was had by all. Rayman wasn’t arrested, so that’s an improvement.

We also opened for this group of teens from the UK – The Targets. These guys – lead singer Conrad in particular – have the spark, you know? They’ve got it. They blew everyone away.

Check out the vid for one of their hits, ‘Wake Up’and watch for them as they move towards a town near you.


How Very Sad

My goodness gracious! The Free Speech Warrior – the one who is suing me for, um, exercising my free speech – is somehow no longer on the speaker’s list for the conference I told you about the other day! How ever do these things happen?

Oh, and here’s this bit from the National Post:

[“The [Law Society] found Mr. Levant violated the following rules of professional conduct: to “respect and uphold the law in personal conduct,” to “seek to improve the justice system,” to not ” act in a manner that might weaken public respect for the law,” to be “courteous and candid,” and to not “harass any person or discriminate against any person” on various prohibited grounds.”

Have a nice day, buddy!


Good Morning, Mr. Hudak!

The sold-out Ontario Liberal Heritage Dinner is tonight. As you sit at home this evening, contemplating that fact, please let me share with you an interesting little blog post that is a must-read:

Given the poor results the PC’s have had under the Hudak regime so far, (running an angry and unsuccessful campaign in St. Paul’s, getting crushed in Toronto Centre, and now looking down the barrel at another defeat in the critical riding of Ottawa West-Nepean) and in particular, the very negative press which emerged following the PC tactics outside, and particularly inside the Legislature during the last sitting. Many in the caucus, particularly those on the Red Tory wing of the party and the more experienced MPP’s, including such high profile figures such as Deputy Leader Christine Elliott, Education critic Elizabeth Witmer, and Chief Whip/Finance Critic/longest serving PC MPP, had expressed displeasure with the rough and tumble tactics of the Hudak/Hillier axis within the party, whose strategy was promoted by Medulun. With the Tories looking at a probable loss in an important swing riding of OW-N, could caucus unrest push more Hudakites out of the way as the more moderate wing of the party calls for a re-think of strategy?

Have a nice night, Timmy. We certainly will!

Yours sincerely,

Warren

(h/t to BCL)


Rich in Irony, etc.

One of the participants – the one who regularly declares himself a champion of free speech, and decries libel lawsuits – is, wait for it, suing me for libel.

Guess which one? You get three guesses, and the first two don’t count.

Yawn.


Own Some Humility

There are many things which differentiate Canadians from our American friends: our politics. Our beer. Our health care system. Our gun control laws. And, theoretically, our hockey.

On that last one, however, maybe not so much, eh? And, Sunday night, we received a timely reminder of that.

I’ve lived in the United States, and I can still recite the Pledge of Allegiance. I love America and Americans. But one of the uniquely American character traits – their must-win ethos, which sometimes manifests itself in arrogance and overweening pride – is one of the traits that we Canadians have never shared. We Canadians have always tended to be a bit less boastful, a bit less cocky. And we have been proud, you might say, about not being American proud.

I started to sense that a perceptible shift was underway a few weeks ago, when I was in a movie theatre with my kids and I saw this: Coca Cola’s Olympics hockey ad. Take a look at it again.

So there you go: an American-headquartered multinational reminding us in a glossy, focus-grouped spot – a spot that, I admit, is beautifully-shot and shrewdly-constructed, with about a half-dozen product placements – that hockey is our game, and let’s remind everyone that it is. It’s manipulative, like all advertising, but it’s a manipulation that can only ever work if the intended targets (ie., us) have signaled their willingness to be manipulated.

We did that earlier on, I think, with this “own the podium” onanism. At the time, I dismissed it as a bit of jingoistic fluff – some ad exec’s flight of fancy. But, eventually, it became apparent that some Canadians – a lot of Canadians – had bought into it. We’d become American-ish, you know? Medals, medals, medals! We’re the best! We will crush you! Grrrr!

We are the best country in the world. We are, we are. But one of the ways we have gotten a lot of Canadians (and non-Canadians) to agree with that is to not say it. Undersell and overperform, Chretien used to tell those of us privileged enough to work for him: in politics, as in life, it’s a workable premise.

We are well on our way to being taught a valuable lesson in these Olympics, I think. I hope it’s a lesson that, four years hence, we heed.

Rah, rah.