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Showing posts from February, 2006

The Plot Thickens: Cindy Klassen joins Stephen Harper in the Winner's Circle and Sam Katz plans a parade

Once upon a time:...

...a new government squeaked into office. They immediately proved to be a bunch of hypocrites and so the people rose up against them. The defeated party has only to pick a new leader and they will be easily re-elected and order will be restored to the kingdom.

This isn't a plot for This is Wonderland, the recently cancelled CBC comedy. And it's not the next reality TV show.

It is, however, the latest drama being written by hundreds of authors across the country. Day after day we read in the newspapers and watch on TV how the Conservative leader Stephen Harper is under fire after the defection of Vancouver Liberal David Emerson. The shamed Liberals, we are told, are chomping at the bit to pick a new leader and regain the reins of power from the faltering Conservatives.

There's only one problem with this scenario--- it's a fantasy.

Says who? Says the Canadian public.

What's being reported is literally a scenario, a plotline created and followed meticul…

New Editor, New Publisher, Same Old Free Press

Sometimes being a media monitor seems like a full time job.

What's wrong with this picture?

Tuesday, The Winnipeg Sun and the Winnipeg Free Press carried the story of a woman stabbed and robbed just off 700 Portage Avenue (near Maryland).

The Sun said it was downtown. Maryland is not downtown.

A quibble, you say? Well, if you can't trust the where, can you trust the what?

A Winnipeg woman was stabbed and hit in the head with a pipe by thugs as she walked home from the bus station early yesterday morning. (Winnipeg Free Press)

Okay so far....

the woman was walking home...about 12:30 a.m. ...when she was approached by a man in the back lane...

Okay, hold on.

She was walking down a back lane at 12:30 a.m.? Hmmm. Nothing suspicious there, surely.

She was stabbed first, then her attacker demanded her handbag. When she wouldn't hand it over, he hit her over the head with something, knocking her to the ground. He took her bag and ran. She had about 70 morphine tablets in her handbag.

O…

For some Manitobans, 'freedom' is just another word

It's Freedom to Read Week.

This Saturday, McNally Robinson Booksellers at Grant Park Mall is holding a 24 Hour Freedom to Read Marathon.

Starting at 10 a.m., readers will take turns, in 10 minute segments, reading "from books on the challenged book lost or an article or essay about censorship."

They won't read from Western Standard magazine.

McNally Robinson Booksellers has banned Western Standard magazine during Freedom to Read Week.

Promoters say Freedom to Read week encourages Canadians "to reaffirm their commitment to intellectual freedom."

Bookstore owner Paul McNally says he'll decide what intellectual freedom is and he's willing to censor reading material if that's what it takes.

From the Freedom to Read website

( http://freedomtoread.ca/) : FREEDOM TO READ

Freedom to read can never be taken for granted. Even in Canada, a free country by world standards, books and magazines are banned at the border. Books are removed from the shelves in Canadian …

Draft Evades Pallister While Winds Whisper a Winner's Name

Brian Pallister can take solace in knowing that his aborted campaign for the leadership of the Manitoba Progressive Conservative Party has not been in vain.

Now, we know Pallister is living proof that politicians in the new millenium are not John Diefenbaker or Tommy Douglas, or even Steven Lewis, who, even if you disagreed with their message, you knew were sincere in doing what was best for all Canadians.

Who can forget that, only days after he was re-elected to Parliament, Pallister decided to announce he was thinking of quitting, to run for the Manitoba leadership--- providing the federal job was still there in case he lost, of course.

We can't help but think It was this outright contempt for the people that voted for him, and not David Emerson's defection to the Conservative Party, that served as the impetus for calls to put politicians on a tighter leash.NDP leader Jack Layton is trying to steal the limelight and make himself champion of voters disaffected by politicians. He…

How can Harper trump a Jack, a queen, a prince, and a David ??

Can the disconnect between the press and the public get any greater?Pick up the newspaper and count the headlines about the "Emerson controversy."

Turn on the T.V. and see the protestors outside David Emerson's constituency office demanding he resign. Tune in a radio talkshow and hear how Emerson's jump to the Conservatives is a "white-hot" topic in the country.

Pundits everywhere are certain the defection is hurting Prime Minister Stephen Harper. His honeymoon with the public is over, they shout. The Liberals are planning a swift return to power.

Problem is, someone forgot to tell the people.

The latest poll by Decima Research reflects none of that. On release of the poll data yesterday, Decima spokesman Bruce Anderson said " the numbers signal a number of things, notably that the controversy surrounding Mr. Emerson's switch and the appointment of unelected Michael Fortier to cabinet have not affected Conservative support."

The Conservatives won t…

A New Kind of Zero Tolerance

Did you laugh as hard as we did at the Police Department's latest request for public assistance?

You know, the one about looking for a suspect who smashed up Decanters Restaurant & Wine Bar a couple of weeks ago.Y

ou remember.... the drunk guy who got caught trying to steal booze from behind the bar. To get away he threw bottles around, broke some windows and scapped with an employee before staff and customers could get him down.

And the owners tried to call the cops. For almost three hours. Three fricking hours fighting with a violent drunk because they couldn't get one single highly trained, armed, dedicated police officer to come and make an arrest.

Even after someone walked to the Public Safety Building and tried to convince the cops there to take the two minute walk to Decanters and help, no cops showed up. So they finally let the guy go.

Yeah, that guy. The guy cops want your help to find.

Note to police: don't hold your breath.

We thought this P.R. debacle was the icin…

Pallister's Culture of Entitlement mocks Stephen Harper

{Thanks to an alert reader who noticed that the blog gremlins had somehow affected the disappearance of this post, originally made on Saturday, February 4, 2006}

There was a sea of red faces in Parliament when Justice John Gomery released his final report this week.

The Liberal caucus turned red with embarassment.

And the Conservative caucus blushed as Gomery echoed their election theme and called for a "culture of integrity" to replace a "culture of entitlement."

Only, the Manitoba Conservative caucus was blushing in shame. Shame at the antics of one of their own, Brian Pallister, the last Member of Parliament to wallow publicly in the culture of entitlement.

Not for him this hairshirt culture of integrity. He has his own definition of integrity which includes

* running for re-election as MP for Portage Lisgar when he doesn't want the job,

* collecting his $144,000 a year pay to represent his constituents in Ottawa while he campaigns in Manitoba to become leader of …

W5 repeats Sophonow myth while Ewatski keeps the secret

Okay. We waited a week for W-5 to say they made a mistake. To say they got it wrong. To say, oops, so sorry, the researcher screwed up.

It never happened. So we'll say it.

W-5 made a mistake. They got it wrong. Somebody screwed up, royally.

Last weekend CTV ran a W5 show about the wrongfully convicted. If memory serves us well, there are about 40 people across Canada whose convictions for major crimes have been overturned by new evidence. As always, one of those on the list is Thomas Sophonow.And, just as always, W-5 showed no understanding of the case against him or the evidence used to convict him.

That aside, there's no excuse for reporter Victor Malarek to have made the egregious error and say that "DNA evidence would finally and fully exonerate Sophonow."

Let's be perfectly clear. DNA evidence did not exonerate Tom Sophonow. We don't know why Tom Sophonow was exonerated.

Police Chief Jack Ewatski has never explained why he said in 2000 that he knew Sophonow wa…

A Nouvelle Stadium for les Bombers Bleus?

Awright, skip the dog-and-pony show. The Blue Bombers have some new coaches. Blah blah blah.

Don't you want to know what happened to their big plans for a fancy new stadium?

Hold onto your hats.

More than a year ago the Bombers were beating the drums for a "destination complex" near Headingley which, they said, would include a 30,000 seat "climate-enhanced and expandable" football stadium, a 250 room hotel, a 40,000 square foot water park and a shiny new 200,000 square foot exhibition facility.

The idea, they said, was to have everything fit neatly in one large circular-shaped configuration around the football field. The cost of the extravaganza was guesstimated at about $165 million, give or take.

It was all going to be built on 450-acres of land known as Red River Exhibition Park, just off Portage Avenue West, near the perimeter. It would still technically be within Winnipeg city limits, even though well past the Perimeter Highway.

A quarter-of-a-million dollar fea…