Monthly Archives: August 2015

Warman Rides Again

Rebel.Media have had a letter from Richard Warman causing them to replace my review of Connie Fournier’s excellent book with a statement designed to ward off litigation. You can read the statement – which I hasten to add I in no way accept or endorse – here. You can read the review of Connie’s book here. Rebel.Media folded in the face of the famously litigious Warman. Rebel.Media did not contact me prior to removing my review and publishing Warman’s retraction notice. That is not how such things are done.

The statement published by Rebel.Media suggests that things which appeared were false. Now, that may refer to the comments which appeared after the review and I make no comment on those. However, in terms of the review itself a few notes:

1) If Richard Warman has any specific allegation he believes is false he is free to get in touch with me at and seek a correction or is welcome to fight his corner in the comments here or beneath the review.

2) Being a careful writer I checked each of the assertions of fact made in the review against references in the public record including transcripts of evidence taken at Tribunal Hearings, Decisions of the Tribunal, trial transcripts and public statements. Obviously it is possible I may be mistaken on one or more points and I welcome corrections if an error has occurred.

3) By convention book reviews, which my piece clearly was, are considered opinion rather than reported journalism.

4) As such I am quite prepared to defend my views, specifically and in general, as fair comment.

5) Alternatively, should it come to that, the review in question took as its theme a question of broad public interest – namely the consequences of Bill C51 given the Harper government’s failure to exercise proper oversight and control over the Canadian Human Rights Commission’s investigations under s.13 of the Canadian Human Rights Act. This was a theme which ran through Connie’s book.

6) I would suggest that the defence of “responsible communication in the public interest” is engaged for any sections of my review which were not either “fair comment” or, as the expression goes, mere invective.

7) In writing the review, and in order to make my point about the failure of the Conservative government vis a vis the CHRC, I used examples which are on the public record including the “jadewarr” history, the complaintless investigation of Free Dominion by the CHRC and Tribunal Chair Edward Lustig’s characterization of behavior as “disappointing and disturbing”. Other remarks I made about the conduct of the Commission were also based upon the public record. I also stated that Connie did not mention Richard Warman “for legal reasons”, namely she is under an injunction not to arising from the John Doe matter.

That the record might seem to damn Mr. Warman does not make discussing that record defamatory. Something that the Rebel might have considered before capitulating and then publishing defamatory material going to my professional reputation as a writer.

I note that the statement which appears at the Rebel is, in itself, defamatory in so far as it implies that I have lied about Warman. Knowing how quick on the litigation draw Warman is I was very, very, careful not to lie about Warman: the truth is damning enough. Asserting that I make false allegations, given that I make part of my living as a writer, amounts to an attack on my personal and professional reputation. And, unlike my review, Warman’s statement is neither fair comment nor “responsible communication in the public interest”. It is a bald assertion. I am weighing my legal options

Perhaps Rebel.Media can be said to have published Warman’s statement under duress, however the fact remains, that by removing my review and publishing the retraction notice Warman required, Rebel.Media has allowed its pages to be used to defame my character and impugn my professional reputation.

I repeat that Rebel.Media did not contact me prior to publishing this retraction notice. I neither approved of its wording nor consented to its publication.

It appears that Rebel Commander himself was quarterbacking the Rebel’s grovel in the direction of Warman.

An Age of Miracles and Wonders

So I was to read the Lesson in church today.

Being an old Anglican – social and cultural thank you – I prefer the old language. And, as the Lesson was Ephesians 6:10-20 which has “principalities” in it, I wanted to read from the King James Version. But we left our bible at home.

But not our smartphones.

In fact, our entire service is driven by our minister’s smartphone. He’s Bluetoothed it to the sound system and our missing organist has been replaced. For our little congregation – 12 on a good Sunday – we have everything from some git with a guitar to the Mormon Tabanacle Choir to sing along with.

Paul Simon was right.


Send the Marines

Heros: "Anthony Sadler, from Pittsburg, California, Aleck Sharlatos from Roseburg, Oregon, and Chris Norman, a British man living in France thwarted the attacker while on the train. They are pictured with medals they received for bravery  Daily Mail

Heros: “Anthony Sadler, from Pittsburg, California, Aleck Sharlatos from Roseburg, Oregon, and Chris Norman, a British man living in France thwarted the attacker while on the train. They are pictured with medals they received for bravery Daily Mail

The Marines on the French train were just as unarmed as the passengers of Flight 93. The difference was that, unlike the passengers on UA93, they were primed for war from the get-go. After the suspect emerged from charging his AK inside the toilet he was met by instant resistance. The rest of the training — the physical fitness, hand-to-hand combat drills, the desensitization to stress — helped in the affray. But nothing so much as the attitude the Marines carried around in their heads which allowed them to engage from time zero. richard fernandez

UPDATE: the Daily Mail tells us they were not Marines.

The Marine heros who saved, what, scores? hundreds? of fast train passengers in France were trained. They had situational awareness. More importantly, they had guts.

Right place at the right time. But the fact seems to be that French intelligence knew about the Morrocan gunman. They knew he was an Islamist. They knew he was wired into other Islamists. He was not a lone wolf, apparently. Rather he was a wolf a bit ahead of the pack.

I am delighted that the Marine heroes stopped him. But, if they hadn’t the French might have had to wake up to the fact they are at war. They might have had to take the measures against the Islamists which they have been ducking for twenty years. Mind you, when in 2004 191 Spaniards were killed in a train explosion set off by an Al Qaeda cell, not much changed in Spain.

The Marines who stopped this terrorist were brave men fighting in a noble cause. French Intelligence, not so much. But, I suspect, the French Intelligence failure was political in nature.

The French political classes, no more than the British or the Swedish political classes, cannot bring themselves to recognize that mass Islamic immigration is not compatible with a liberal, Western, society. The atrocities and near atrocities, need to add up before the political classes either wake up or are replaced. That will take a while. Whether there is enough time left is going to be interesting to see. I think there is; but it will be a close run thing

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OED Here I Come

My pal Kathy Shaidle was kind enough to send me this link:

Apparently the good people at Wordspy thing that I coined “underbussed” as a verb.

It looks like Richard Warman has been underbussed by the Department of Justice as well as the CHRC.
—Jay Currie, “Panic Stations,” Jay Currie, October 28, 2008
That particular iteration of my blog is lost to history unless it is on an old hard drive or the Wayback Machine. But I am completely delighted.
I am also, I am afraid, just about certain that I did not actually coin the verb.
But, when greatness is thrust upon you…
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Betrayed: Stephen Harper’s war on principled conservatism – A Review

51i7c9ikkIL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_Various people have asked me why I will not vote for Stephen Harper and the Conservatives in this election. While the Cons’ failure to seriously tackle the deficit, reduce the size of government and begin to dismantle the Liberal state are all good reasons, I probably would hold my nose one more time if it were not for one, fundamental fact: C-51. And I might have even given Harper a pass on C-51 if I didn’t know the Conservative record on free speech, the perversion of the Human Rights Commission and the legal thuggery which attended it.

Connie Fournier and her husband Mark are not going to be voting for the Harper Conservatives either: Connie has detailed her reasons in Betrayed: Stephen Harper’s war on principled conservatism.

Full disclosure: I’ve met Connie and Mark once and I provided an affidavit in their defence when Dr. Dawg sued them for libel (a case which they won at great personal expense). Connie and I chat on Google and, in so far as it is possible to have friends you only chat with on the internet, I’d like to think Connie is one of mine.

The Fourniers are ordinary, middle class Canadians – Mark drives long haul trucks, Connie was a homeschooling stay-at-home mum – who were politically involved as far back as the Canadian Alliance. They started a website called Free Dominion in 2001 where conservatives of various sorts could post topics and comments and have a good time arguing among themselves. Continue reading

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Nigel Wright = Dudley DoRight

images (2)Revulsion appears to have driven him personally, not only to make out the bank draft for Duffy but, before that, to try to make him see that whether or not what he’d done was illegal, it was improper, and that ordinary people would recognize it immediately: Duffy had been caught with his snout in the trough, and he needed to make it right.

Happily for Wright, his personal raison d’etre coincided with the needs of his job, to protect Harper and his government and to stifle scandal, wherever it bred.

He must have been as much of an anomaly in politics as he is in that courtroom, an honest witness sitting in a chair most often occupied by mooks, thugs and liars, this man with the great wide streak of hard-as-nails pragmatism and the almost ridiculous sense of propriety. christie blatchford, national post

As show trials go the Duffy trial is a bit of a damp squib. Duffy is an obvious scumball. Well, yes and it was idiotic to appoint him to the Senate. And he was a greedy scumball who got himself into a shitload of trouble for being greedy.

Nigel Wright bailed him out. In Wright’s world 90K to make a problem go away is nothing. It was his own money. He solved a problem. The media frenzy – and it seems pretty much the only people who give a rats ass about this are the media, jealous no doubt that one of their own hit the Senate – needs to prove some sort of conspiracy in the PMO/PCO to what? Bribe Duffy? (If it was a bribe it would be Wright, not Duffy, who would be charged.)

Wright wanted to make a nasty situation go away. Duffy had not done anything which was illegal (by the quaint rules of the Senate which assume, contrary to experience, that Senators can be counted upon to be gentlemen) but his troughing was extreme even for that august body. He needed to repay his crappy expenses and Nigel had the money to make it happen.

Did Wright structure the transaction to keep his name out of it? Er, no. His name was all over the thing. He did not hide the fact he gave a piece of shit 90 thousand dollars. All he asked in return was that Duffy fess up to his not terrifically major transgressions.

Losing Duffy is, all things considered, a bonus for Canada; losing Wright is a tragedy.


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Corbyn, Progressives and Elections

BfBQwFTThe British Labour Party, having suffered a surprise and humiliating defeat in the last General Election is in the midst of a leadership contest. Without going into detail, the contest is looking like a runaway victory for one Jeremy Corbyn. Mr. Corbyn is a Progressive wet dream – renationalization, a Hamas supporter, deep, deep green. So much so that Tony Blair, writing in the Guardian said,

If Jeremy Corbyn becomes leader it won’t be a defeat like 1983 or 2015 at the next election. It will mean rout, possibly annihilation. If he wins the leadership, the public will at first be amused, bemused and even intrigued. But as the years roll on, as Tory policies bite and the need for an effective opposition mounts – and oppositions are only effective if they stand a hope of winning – the public mood will turn to anger. They will seek to punish us. They will see themselves as victims not only of the Tory government but of our self-indulgence. the guardian

In Canada, as Dr. Dawg points out, the NDP is conducting an “Orange purge” of its candidates based upon those candidates support for “Palestinian Human Rights”. Two candidates purged so far according to Dawg.

In the US, while Trump wanders about saying the unsayable, the progressive left of the Democratic party personified by Bernie Sanders is pulling ahead of the lacklustre Hillary – who is, frankly, more likely to be indicted than nominated. But Sanders faces his own progressive nemesis in the form of harpies from the Soros funded #blacklivesmatter claque.

Sitting well to the right I can, of course, simply pop open a beer, grab some popcorn and cheer the lefties on. However, there is something actually happening here which makes this more than a pleasing spectator sport.

All over the West there is fissure between what might be called the “pragmatic” left and the “progressives”. The progressives embrace a multitude of causes – they are social justice warriors, militantly pro-immigration, deep green, pro-Pali, certain that Islam is never the problem, all about equality and very much against a particular form of “inequality”. They are happy to include 9-11 Truthers, BDS activists, radical environmentalists and intersectional feminists. And the progressives are sick and tired of, on the one hand, having their activism used by mainline parties and on the other being pushed into the backroom when it comes time to actually run an election campaign.

For several decades the ostensibly left-wing parties in the West have tried very hard to keep their progressives as far away from the public eye as possible. Sort of like the crazy uncle in the attic: you can hear him but never meet him. Pragmatically this makes a lot of sense because if you let them out of their cage they come up with gems like Linda McQuaig announcing that oil sands oil needs to be left in the ground so that we can avoid the scary “global warming” which occupies so much progressive attention.

For those of us on the right, progressives provide a good deal of entertainment. SJW’s earnest discoveries of racism under every bed simply denatures the word “racist”. The capacity of true green believers to “keep the faith” in the face of the collapse of the IPCC’s models and the Pause” is delightful proof of the power of belief over science. However, for people like Mulcair or Tony Blair or Hillary Clinton, the progressives’ intrusion at the grown up table is an existential threat.

A great deal of the left’s electoral success is based upon its capacity to isolate and immobilize the progressives left parties usually contain. (The NDP in Canada buried the Waffle so deeply they can’t remember where they put it.) But that capacity is showing signs of slipping away. Corbyn will either become the next leader of the Labour Party or the fixing of the leadership election will be so blatant that the Labour Party itself will be destroyed. If Mulcair does not win the next election, the progressive part of the NDP will be able to claim that it was because the NDP sold out its progressive heritage. If Hillary somehow manages to win the Democratic nomination and is beaten in the General, the progressives will be able to claim that a real progressive would have won. And in each of these scenarios the farther shores of progressive thought will no longer be confined to the back rooms.

If the progressives are able to gain traction it will open terrific opportunities for the conservative interest. Western political landscapes being what they are, the right has rarely governed from a conservative position. At best, it heads in a statist direction a little more slowly than the left would prefer. But if the progressives are able to seize control of the main left parties and propel them out into the progressive wilderness, the conservative parties stand a chance of election on actual conservative platforms.

Pragmatism on the left has been met by pragmatism on the right; but if the left is willing to embrace the electoral poison of progressive policy, the right will be able to get on with the job of slowly shrinking the state.

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Debate, eh?

Elizabeth may, leaders debateWell I watched pretty much the whole thing. One of the 30,000 or so people who did on YouTube.

Justin showed up. Wore pants, albeit short pants, and sounded like a really quite good university debater. Tom was unctuous. Lizzie was, sorry to say, drowned out. And Steve looked very much like the sort of adult one would want to have as Prime Minister. (And I don’t like Steve.)

No one landed a zinger. No one ran over time. Everyone was quite polite and very Canadian. On my Twitter feed one American who was watching the Republican Gong show could not help but compare and contrast and wish the US had something like the pretty solid debate we had tonight.

My one note is this: Trudeau, Mulcair and Harper all talked over Lizzie May. It grated. I kept hoping that Harper would “white knight” Liz and say something simple like “let her finish”, or “Miss May was speaking”. It would have made Mulcair and Trudeau look like the bullies they so clearly are. It would have been smart politics too. Liz put up a credible performance tonight. Yes, of course she is a lunatic; but she was not wrong on C-51. She is a weirdly decent person and that came through.

Harper could easily have called the other boys to order and demonstrated the real leadership his campaign is trying to project. He didn’t.

It was not a fatal error, but it was an opportunity missed.

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Winter is Coming

global warming, AGW

Oh Dear….

You see those little lines up there? the blue one goes down the green one is flat. Well those are the trends of the satellite temperature measurements for the last couple of decades.

CO2 up, temperature flat or declining.

The nest time a Canadian politician talks about cap and trade or carbon taxes ask him (or her) when was the last time the worldwide satellite temperature gauges showed any warming.

Bet they won’t answer. Because they don’t know and it’s our job to tell them.

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Saudi Gets Serious in Yemen

CLf7bm-UYAA4nxaThe reported deployment of tanks and other armoured vehicles from the United Arab Emirates, which have been seen unloading in Aden over recent days, represents the first major ground involvement by the Arab coalition ranged against the Houthi rebels.

It is a signal that the air campaign launched in March has its limits and it is a sign too that the Saudi-led coalition is willing now to become more engaged in the fighting. The reinforcements may already have had a hand in the recapture of al-Anad airbase: an important asset that could provide a launch-pad for more extensive operations against the rebels. bbc

Debka has more.

It looks like the Saudis and the UAE, backed by naval bombardment, is finally getting down to business in Yemen. It is not going to be pretty because the Saudis are apparently willing to scratch the paint on their tank fleet. With 1200 tanks that is a serious force even if only a fraction is deployed.

What this means for the Iranian-backed Yemeni rebels is annihilation. And there is little chance Iran is going to be able to do much to stop them as it is occupied to the north trying to keep Assad in power and fighting ISIS.

In broader terms this is a departure for the Saudis who have usually kept ground troops at home. It is also a setback for Obama’s whistling past the graveyard Middle Eastern surrender. His boys the Iranians are going to suffer a significant loss to their Sunni enemies.

My bet is that the Saudis didn’t bother to ask permission or even tell the Americans they were going to launch this offensive. The ever dumb Kerry was in Qatar as the offensive launched meeting with Sunni leaders. Want to bet they mentioned the fact they were taking on Iranian proxies.

And if the Sunnis did not bring in the US where were they getting their satellite intelligence from. One guess. Those fiends in Israel have 24/7 high-res coverage of the relevant areas.

Things are changing fast in the Middle East. The Big Zero has been benched.

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