Monday, May 30, 2005

Alliance of the Unaligned

My feelings about partisan politics is that, pardon me Mr. Marx, I wouldn't want to belong to any party that would have me as a member. (Who would want to be a part of a party that wouldn't make up its damn mind about anything? A party run by ditherers... Imagine that!)

So when James Bow asked me to join the Blogging Alliance of Non-Partisan Canadians, I decided that this was one club I would be happy to be a member of.

Please check out some the BANPC BlogRoll on the left (under "Fellow Fencers") for a bit of genuine free-thinking.
Nouvelle France, Old Europe

Last night, Paul Wells wrote about the French rejection of the EU constitution:
Because Belinda Stronach was not involved, expect most Canadian news organizations to ignore this news more or less completely.
This morning, it was above-the-fold news in the three newspapers I check out... See, things aren't sooo bad.

Checking the results, I see that St-Pierre and Miquelon was one of the few départements where the majority wanted to join the E.U... Isn't it about time we pulled them into our Canadian Union?
Jane Jacobs... Super Villain?

Dark Age Ahead, indeed!

Friday, May 27, 2005

Best-Named Blog of the Day

Buckets of Grewal. To be said out loud in a monster-truck rally voice.

[A tip o' the hat to Calgary Grit.]

Thursday, May 26, 2005

"Lord Black's box caper"


cbboxes
Originally uploaded by uncascrooge.
Four words you never expected to find strung together appear in today's Globe and Mail, alongside funnee security cam pictures of Connie B. Why, oh why, has no one offered this man a reality TV show yet?

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Terry Teachout PantsWatch, Episode II.

The Wall Street Journal theatre critic mentioned his pants being down on his blog again today.

[Previous Teachout PantsWatch.]
Belinda and Belinda

In defending some of the language thrown at Belinda as she crossed the floor, many Conservative apologists have been missing the point. Worse, they have been using the rhetorical device that I hate the most: The Dictionary Defense, ie. well, the Oxford dictionary defines "whore" as a ... blah, blah, blah... of both genders so it can't be sexist...

Fine. You and your dictionary can go govern Contextlessania. We're talking about politicians here. They're supposed to know how to talk -- even the straight-shootin' types -- without offending (over) half the population. Forget whether calling someone a "dipstick" is sexist or not; it would get you fired from The Political Apprentice in the first round.

Over in the media, all those wink-wink headlines on the newstands seriously turned off all of the women I've spoken with over the past week, even those who might call Belinda any number of catty names in private. As a (blonde) lawyer friend remarked to me, the Toronto Sun actually came off looking grown-up with their "Boo-linda" headline, managing to express their opinion of Belinda without mentioning the colour of her hair.

Meanwhile, all the "prostitute" talk on the blogosphere -- particularly in anonymous comments -- was just plain odious. I think Kinsella is right. Come election time, the Tories' biggest supporters are going to be their biggest liability. (I also think, as libel laws catch up, we're going to see comments disappear from most blogs in a few years.)

Conservatives and their supporters can learn a lot from the coordinated attack by the Liberal female MPs, like McLellan and Dhalla. The sexist police saw a former enemy parachuted into a prominent position -- shoving aside two less-glamous women politicians in the way -- and immediately jumped to her defence because she was part of their party. That's how the game is played, fool. Learn it, before we're stuck with the Paul Martin Liberals forever.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Thursday was a good day for the NDP...

Yes, the Martin-Layton budget passed. But, on the future election front, columnist and high-profile UQAM professor Léo-Paul Lauzon announced that he will most likely run for the Dippers in Outremont. Outremont, home of much-loved minister Jean Lapierre, was the Quebec riding where the NDP got the biggest share of the vote in 2004. (Admittedly a mere 10%.)

Of course, if the reception that greeted former-sovereigntist Lapierre when he ran for the Libs was any indication, the media will jump over the fact that Lauzon is a sovereigntist. (So perhaps Layton should restrain himself from any more outbursts about parties "getting into bed with the separatists.") I, for one, take it is as a good sign when a sovereigntist joins a federal party other than the Bloc.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Confidence restored!

Great. Now the Martin Liberals can finally get back to destroying the country. Whew!

Anyway, for an historic vote -- Never before has the Speaker cast the deciding vote in a motion of confidence!!! -- that was really friggin' boring to watch. The commentators on CBC were clearly bored too:
Don (halfway through the yeas on the second bill): There are a lot of Martins in the Commons...
Peter: Yes. There are four Martins...
All things being equal I think that:
a) a delayed election is good for the Conservatives;
b) but the loss of Belinda will hurt the Conservatives more in the long run; and
c) the Liberals gain of Belinda will hurt them more in the long run than it has helped them now. Yeah -- appoint a unilingual anglophone minister to implement post-Gomery reform, one who happens to (now) be one of the most hated women in Quebec for helping a corrupt government Quebecers despise stay in power. That won't backfire at all.
Good Morning Vietnam.

In certain circles, I am generally acknowledged to be a champion sleeper. I will sleep -- and have slept -- through thunderstorms, earthquakes, noisy roommate sex and yappy Bouviers without problem.

But I have met my match. This morning at 7:00 a.m., a bunch of clodhopping contractors invaded the floor above my basement apartment and began doing their best sonic imitation of the Blue Man Group playing roller hockey with the Vietcong. Of course, this would happen the morning after I had stayed up until 3:30 a.m. watching The Revenge of the Sith. (For work. No, really.)

This must be how Peter MacKay feels...

Anyway, the floors above me are being redone because the house is going on sale. Consequently, so is my cozy little basement apartment, as I learned in a letter from my (usually quite wonderful) landlord on Tuesday night.

I am therefore looking for a new apartment, to move in July 1. If any of you know of a nice place in one of Toronto's less-lame neighbourhoods (The Annex, Queen West, Little Portugal, Cabbagetown, Little Italy, etc.), I would appreciate any leads you might have.
I would like to come up from underground and I wouldn't mind a roommate who wouldn't mind me. (I'm a mild-mannered reporter by day, and remain so during the night.)

I'm at jkelly -at- gmail.com and will be indebted for any help.

Post-script

Hi y'all.

A small note on this pre-writ return to blogging: It is true. I am weak. (You couldn't even wait nine more hours to find out if there's a Spring election? No.)

But I am actually finding that I accomplish the same or less sans blogging as I did with. As a compromise with myself, I will no longer forbid myself from blogging, but worry less about being regular or interesting. If you previously thought that On the Fence was irregular and boring, well, you're going to just love On the Fence v2.

(Fair warning: I may quit again if offered a Senate seat.)

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

On Similarities versus Differences

From CBC News Sunday:
CAROLE MACNEIL: You've heard the comment that Paul Martin, that you're Paul Martin in a cocktail dress? (laughs)

BELINDA STRONACH: Well, he probably agrees with me that I might look a little better in a cocktail dress.

(Laughs)

CAROLE MACNEIL: He probably would. Um, what's the difference between you and Paul Martin?

BELINDA STRONACH: Well, I believe there is quite a difference between Paul Martin and I. We have different experiences in business. I have created a lot of jobs in this country. We've had a strong manufacturing uh, have had a strong manufacturing contribution, created lots of jobs in this country. It's different, I'm not comparing, but I'm saying it is quite different. Second, I do not have necessarily the political experience of Paul Martin, we have lots of political experience in Ottawa at the moment, and look at the situation we're in. I do believe I bring a fresh and I bring a new approach to government.