Thursday, July 06, 2006

Short, snarky comments on recent news stories

Story: Provinces urge Clement to help plot a pharmaceutical strategy
OTTAWA -- Provincial health ministers who will meet today to approve a progress report on a national pharmaceutical strategy say a pan-Canadian program to cover the burdensome costs of some drugs cannot fly without the financial help of the federal government.

Snark: I can see why they'd want Clement's help with this, after all, not only is the the minister responsible for the pharmaceutical industry, he also owns a bunch of stock in a pharmaceutical company.

Story: Cloutier deal caps salary concerns

Canucks general manager Dave Nonis sent Cloutier to the Los Angeles Kings for a second-round draft choice in 2007 and another pick in 2009 if the netminder re-signs next summer with Marc Crawford's Kings.

Snark: I guess Nonnis couldn't get them to throw-in a bag of pucks.

Story: Despite fraud, Guité 'an exemplary citizen,' lawyer says

MONTREAL -- Aside from the fraud case against him, Chuck Guité is "an exemplary citizen," his lawyer said yesterday as she argued for the release of the former sponsorship bureaucrat, pending an appeal of his conviction.

Snark: No snark needed here, the headline writer beat me to it.

Story: Tory agent tossed over nasty e-mail

A former spokeswoman for the Conservative Party of Canada has been fired from an Alberta MP's office after issuing a blistering personal e-mail to a woman who wrote to several federal politicians.

Snark: She should just get elected, as a Conservative MP she could tell people to f***-off or give them the finger with impunity.

Story: Volpe gains ground in recruiting drive

OTTAWA -- The now-completed membership drive by Liberal leadership candidates has allowed Toronto MP Joe Volpe to claim membership in the top tier of contenders, although Michael Ignatieff retains front-runner status.

: Looks like we may be forming a new party on Dec. 4. We should start thinking about names now to avoid any CCRAP issues with the acronym.

Story: Bush applauds PM's leadership on softwood

U.S. President George Bush heralded Prime Minister Stephen Harper's leadership on resolving the longstanding softwood lumber dispute after their meeting in Washington on Thursday.

Snark: It's great Bush is happy. Now if only Harper's constituents, you know, Canadians, and our forest industry, shared Bush's pleasure.

Recommend this Post on Progressive Bloggers


A Toronto Liberal said...

How can you call yourself a "Liberal" when you won't respect the democratic process that might result in a longtime Liberal like Joe Volpe becoming leader?

Have some sense. Unless you really actually like Harper.

A BCer in Toronto said...

TL, reading that I might advise you to follow your own advice re: sense. And we're dealing in extreme hypotheticals here, but let's go into hypothetical land for a few minutes.

If Joe Volpe were fairly and squarely elected leader of the Liberal Party, would I respect the democratic process that elected him? Sure I would, IF he wins fairly then he's the leader, and the people will have spoken.

But what, or who, I don't respect is Joe Volpe. I don't think I need to get into the many reasons why.

I do call myself a Liberal. And, contrary to what may be tought in the Joe Volpe school of politics, and recent history, being a Liberal doesn't mean blind loyalty to our leaders. Or at least is shouldn't.

I believe in certain principles, and finding those principles to be shared by the Liberal Party I became a member. I'm a long-time Liberal too, relativelty speaking. And while I could live with nearly any of the candidates, I could not live with a Liberal Party led by Joe Volpe. He doesn't share those principles, and I wouldn't feel at home or comfortable in his party.

So, should he be elected (and holding my breath I'm definitely not) I would respect the democratic process that elected him and I'd take my energies elsewhere. And I'm sure I wouldn't be the only one.

Zac said...

you won't respect the democratic process that might result in a longtime Liberal like Joe Volpe becoming leader?

I'll certainly respect it, but from a distance.

Zac said...

I'm not surprised that Crawford wants Cloutier that bad. He seems to be his biggest fan, don't know why.

The Canucks could have traded him for a half-eaten breakfast and still gotten a good deal.

A Toronto Liberal said...

I don't understand the small but vocal minority of people (mostly online) that have an axe to grind against Joe Volpe. He has been a long time and loyal Liberal that has worked hard for the party and served his country well in public office. He was a politcal force in cabinet for Paul Martin and served Toronto and Ontario well as senior minister.

Unlike other candidates he has a large enough base of support that he does not have to depend on loans (like Mr. Dion) and returned the money from those under 18 the minute it was pointed out and is now leading the charge for a change to the law to ensure that it won't happen again.

Why has Mr. Dion not lobbied the senate to change the accountibilty legislation like Mr. Volpe?

I don't want to accuse anyone, but I really wonder if Joe Volpe's name was Mike Smith or Pierre Trembly or something would he face such dislike from so many in the party. Does his status has a powerful member of Canada's immigrant community work against him?

A BCer in Toronto said...

I don't want to accuse anyone...

You don't want to, but then you go right ahead and imply I'm racist. I'm not going to respond any further until that's withdrawn.

A BCer in Toronto said...

Zac, I like Cloutier, his problem was consistency. Don't get me wrong, I'm happier with Luongo, but I think Cloutier is a very talented goalie and if he can every find his form consistently and stay healthy he'll be a force to be reckoned with.

A Toronto Liberal said...

I had no desire to call you or anyone else racist, my only point was that it seems Joe Volpe gets the brunt of the attack from certain pundits and the media that seems unfair compared to how the other camapigns are being covered. Why no stories on the Rae campaign's connection with Power Corp? Or Ignatieff's campaign manager David Smith offering the sky to lure supporters in side? Why only did a small mistake from someone in the Volpe team result in all the attacks coming down against Joe?

I just feel that Joe Volpe is getting a bad rap and he would be treated better if he was the typical old school Anglo or Francophone Liberal that we have always had leading our party. As a party that wants the immigrant vote, we sure seem to have a hard time letting one of those imigrants be our leader.

Zac said...

Jeff, I think he's a good goalie too but he has to overcome the problems that you mentioned. He needs to stay healthy and he needs to be consistent. I also think that he's a bit of choke artist in the playoffs.

I think the Canucks got an awesome deal. Too bad about Bertuzzi though, but I think he needed a change of scenery.

A BCer in Toronto said...

Negative press for Joe Volpe has anything to do with his ethnicity, it has everything to do with his actions. Don't ask me to explain what the media covers, but i think Rae is a media darling right now because they know him,he's a name, and as far as Ignatieff's campaign manager, I don't know of any specifics around promises, but generally speaking, while not good making promises for support has been part of politics since ancient rome and I doubt it's isolated. (I'm going to be Ambassador to England when Dion's PM...just kidding)

On loans, that's a red herring and a weak one at that. It's common practice for candidates, in the general election or a leadership campaign, to take out a loan at for start-up expenses and repay it with donations over the course of the campaign. Nothing unusual at all.

Now as for Joe, you specifically mentioned the kiddie donations so I'll specifically address that, as it was also the straw that broke the back for me with him. Up until then I didn't care for him and he was at or near the bottom of my list, but I could probbly have stomached him if I had to.

First of all, the problem isn't with youth donating to his campaign, it's that it was a very obvious attempt to skirt individual donation limits by their parents. I highly doubt the parents just decided to do this on their own and no one on the campaign was aware. Donations of $20k don't just come in the mail.

When called on it yes, he returned the donations. If he had just admitted a mistake was made and apologized, that might have been OK. But he refused to accept any responsibility, and offered up the lame story of the kids seeing a speech of his and being inspired to raid their piggy banks. It insults our intelligence. When Liberals asked Joe for an explination, as happened at a BC Federal Council meeting, his campaign manager Jimmy K berates and intimidates them while Joe says nothing.

Now he's crusading to ban youth donations, as you mentioned. But that's not the problem, parents funelling donations through their kids is. Such a ban would prevent Young Liberals from attending conventions and fundraising dinners. It's a bad idea, and transparent politicking. If you can join the party at 14, you should be allowed to make a donation at 14.

There's other reasons I don't like Joe, but they're more minor. But taken together Joe has come to empitomize all that I dislike about politics, and, at a time we as a party are trying to move forward, all that the public dislikes about the Liberals: the win at any cost, break the rules, intimidation, old-style politics.

We couldn't move forward with him as our leader, it would be a huge step backward and handing a majority to Harper. But more than that, as I said before, I don't share his values and wouldn't be comfortable in a Volpe Liberal Party. I'd wish him luck, but I'd have to move on.

A BCer in Toronto said...

Cloutier was a salary dump and Nonis had no leverage, still, he's an asset and it would have been nice to get a little more for him. I guess it was the best he could do though.

I liked Todd but he was never going to regain his form here, so he had to go. Now Jovo, he'll really be missed. Looks like Anson probably won't be back either. I like the Willie Mitchell pickup, a good BC boy.

Our problem wasn't so much in D down the stretch last year though, the D was good and Auld was solid in goal. It was scoring goals. We missed Jovo as the PP quarterback when he was hurt, now that he's gone he'll need to be replaced. If Carter goes, replacing him on the Sedin line is hugely important, as is who will play with Naslund and Morrison. We need to acquire some scoring strength.

Penny said...

I missed what happened with Jovo. Where did he go?? I thought he was one of THE backbone players on the team. We'll miss Anson Carter too.

Was it all about money, or do you suppose they were less interested in staying with the Canucks when Marc Crawford was let go?

Is Nonis the right GM for the team?

A BCer in Toronto said...

Jovo signed as a free-agent with Phoenix, and Carter is still a free agent but seems likely to sign with Toronto or LA. I don't think it's anything to do with Nonis or Crow, it's purely the salary cap. Luongo has a big salary, the Sedins had to be given raises. Jovo and Carter were/are both unrestricted and due large raises, and the Canucks just don't have the cap room to give them the raises they're looking for.

Ryan B. Patrick said...

Get to work slacker! :p

Public Static said...


I am sorry but Anson Carter is not due a big raise, he was the least talented 30 goalscorer in the league last year. While he did find open ice for the Sedins to find him with their passing abilities last season was more a function of their breaking out then his talents and abilities.

That said the word is he is asking for a 3 year $9 million deal and every GM in the league is balking at paying a guy that much based on a season with the Wonder Twins.

Dean Lombardi on Team 1040 yesterday said (paraphasing from memory here):
Anson better realize he needs the Sedins, as much as they might need him"

So if other GMs are talking about him like that he might be back as a Canuck after all, just hopefully a less then $2.2 million.

As for Volpe. If the Liberals choose him to be their leader Mr. Dork will get his majority goverment and by the end of the first year the US will own all of Canada. Simply because he has too much baggage for the media to ignore (unless he joined the CPC, then it is all good).