Saturday, March 15, 2008

What St. Patrick's Day means in Montreal

I blog with Irish whiskey (Jamie's) in my veins tonight.

This is St. Patrick's Day weekend in Montreal, and I imagine for Boston and New York as well. For those who haven't experienced it firsthand, it is perhaps best understood by its singularly unvarnished portrayal in a noteworthy Simpsons episode.

Montreal parade uninterrupted since 1824

Unlike the other two cities' parades, Montreal parade organizers have managed not to skip a year in nearly two centuries - this despite Quebec's penchant for long unforgiving winters. I used to routinely participate with vigor myself (once, even playing mandolin on a float, with painfully cold fingers).

What is special about the Montreal version is the extraordinary cultural openness of the parade. I don't know about the other two cities, but here the event multi tasks as both a festival of Spring and of multiculturalism - in the sense that the Irish were the first immigrants that could be deemed "them" by the existing "us" community; and therefore, stand as the flag-bearers for immigrants of all races and creeds that have seen fit to settle here. To their credit, the parade organizers have maintained an open-minded (and decidedly apolitical) atmosphere for the event, always welcoming to their parade, any community group that wished to participate as "Irish for a day" in the fun-loving spirit of the thing.

The result is a scene of humanity at its very best. Not just Scots, Brits and Quebecois de souche; but Italians, Greeks, Portuguese, Spanish, Jamaican, Haitian, Russian, African, Arab, Jewish and others, all participate in this annual rite of Montreal Spring. We wear cheesey green plastic hats and drink green-tinted Labatt's Blue (among other beverages) and copulate fiercely on Ste. Catherines Street. Well, maybe fiercely isn't the best word, and perhaps copulation is rarely engaged-in (in view of the young'uns), but it's not terribly far away, what with all that booze flowing...

To what end this ramble, you ask?

Well, when I was still in my twenties, I used to work at the Peel Street McDonald's, just around the corner from the middle of the parade route. We would typically double our usual business for a Sunday in March, and we would have a couple of extra multi-gallon coffee decanters at the ready.

Thus, for ten years, I was witness to the parade and the joviality of its participants first-hand. I recall one year in the early 90's where a major blizzard had dumped 30+ centimetres of snow in the preceding 48 hours. That didn't stop the city from scrambling to clear the snow, and managing to still paint the traditional green hash marks down the center of the parade route. Nor did it stop the usual thousands of Montrealers from coming out to watch.

Another year, (perhaps the late 80's?) the parade day temperature was somewhere between frigid and colder than Stephen Harper's heart. I recall us repairing to the Mad Hatter's Pub by 12:30 pm to escape the cold, where we watched the parade on TV while sipping our pints.

During yet another year in those early nineties, I was a part of a celtic band called Killick's Claw, and we played at Buster Keaton's, followed by an evening gig at the Olde Orchard Pub, where we absolutely killed (bear in mind: the sobriety of our audiences was definitely questionable).

Most Unforgiving winter since the '98 Ice Storm

With that in mind, let me just say that this has undoubtedly been the toughest winter I have ever experienced in 38 years living in la Belle Province (with the possible exception of the one featuring the Ice Storm of 1998). Adding to the fun this year, I have a young family, and Montreal's snow removal capacity has been tested to such an extent that as of this writing, the sidewalk in front of my home has been unnavigable by poussette (baby stroller) for six days now.

So suffice it to say, if there was ever a year the city was really relying on its famous St. Patrick's Day parade to let loose and give winter the royal send-off it so rightfully deserves, it's the 2008 version.

And with that, I leave you with this snippet: is there any better metaphor for the promise of the New World than what this parade means for the diverse social patois of Montreal? Where we shed all the cultural and political baggage of our fore bearers to show solidarity of purpose with our fellow immigrant clans in carving out a niche for this generation and those to follow; one that is blessedly unhindered by the divisiveness of the squabbles and internecine battles that we - or our ancestors - chose to relieve ourselves of by emigrating from these places of never-ending conflict and heart-wrenching sorrow?

Bienvenue, welcome and Happy St. Patrick's Day

So to my fellow Montrealers - one of which is a new co-worker and dual Canadian-Lebanese citizen who moved to Montreal to escape the Israeli bombing campaign of 2006 - let me welcome you to the 2008 St. Patrick's Day Parade with open arms and a slug of Irish whiskey.

To you and all other arrivals, recent or otherwise: do come as you are, but not necessarily as you were.

Smile, sing and dance in the street. It is important to respect tradition, you know.

Most of all, welcome to your new home and new future. I know you will make the most of it, and I hope we entrenched Canadians don't disappoint. In the meantime, just

Cheers to you

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Friday, March 14, 2008

Why I'm proud to be Green

Elizabeth May asks all the right questions.


CALGARY – Green Party Leader Elizabeth May today called on the Harper government to stop stalling and cooperate with the Military Police Complaints Commission (MPCC).

“There is no credible reason of security or strategy in blocking access to documents about the treatment of prisoners. Defense Minister Peter MacKay and Prime Minister Stephen Harper apparently want a cover up, not an inquiry,” she noted.

The hypothetical of how evidence of treatment of prisoners could possible be a security issue is mooted by the fact the MPCC is itself an arm of government with full security clearance.

For more than a year the complaints commission has been unable to access key evidence due to obstruction by the government.

“Canadians want the truth. The allegation that detainees were tortured needs to be thoroughly investigated. What does this government have to hide?”


This used to be a country the world could look up to as an example of what it looks like to have respect for Human Rights. Not so under the Super Secret Harper Imitation Tories regime.

What I don't understand, is why we don't hold these Prisoners of War ourselves? And you can call them "detainees" to try and skirt the UN declaration all you want - the distinction is merely mealy-mouthed posturing. The fact is: you're in a war zone. You take prisoners. They're prisoners of war, okay?

It's disgusting to me that my country is failing to live up to its responsibilities to the world, and it's a damn shame this practice is unfairly tarnishing the reputation of our fighting men and women who are forced to carry out these orders.

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Geeks in Uproar over Bill Clinton's comments

PHILADELPHIA--Saying he was "way out of his solar quadrant" in declaring that Sen. Barack Obama's slim, goofy-guy personae has benefited him in attracting the geek vote, leading geeks were united in their scorn for former President Bill Clinton's comment during a campaign stop in support of his wife, Sen. Hillary Clinton and her Democratic nomination bid.

Clinton's remark, made before a steelworkers union in Allentown yesterday, was: "All I'm saying is that he sure is lucky he was born a geeky, funny-looking character because he's sure got the Trekkie-vote sewn up but good."

"That's not even phasers on stun anymore," declared Sidney R. Khozhang, editor of Mac World. "Just singling us out as some political force in this way - while it does seem kind of exciting - is very racist, and not at all becoming of a former leader of all free humanoids; more like what you'd expect of a Sith Lord."

Another prominent geek, Martin Cohen, editor of Battlestar Gallactikosher, which tags itself as "the highest circulation Jewish Battlestar Gallactica fanzine in the lower twelve states", was equally unimpressed.

"What rankles is that we geeks have been working to have better representation in U.S. politics for decades," Cohen said in a telephone interview. "Finally, this guy with the geekiest name, the geekiest smile and the geekiest frame you've ever seen is (gasp) less than a parsec away from the White House. This (publicity) is the last thing we need. But I think there will be a backlash. Like in that Battlestar Gallactica episode from Season 2, where..." at which point this reporter felt the urge to retch and could not continue the interview.

While Senator Clinton was quick to distance herself from her husband's remarks, calling them "regrettable" and noting it remains to be seen "what the definition of 'is' is," she stopped short of firing her husband from the campaign (not that anyone is surprised), but did mention she intends to refrain from administering him any "num-nums" for the foreseeable future.

For his part, Sen. Obama was quick to pounce on the perceived faux pas, stating at a rally in Pittsburgh: "Geeks built this country - or at least its interactive gaming sites."

"I know I'm no linebacker. Sure, when the wind is blowing at 20-plus miles an hour, I know enough to stay inside and not get blown over. But that doesn't excuse these remarks, and I anxiously await a response from the Senator from New York, on how she intends to respond to this insult to geeks across this great nation. That's not the kind of politics Americans want."

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Monday, March 10, 2008

Sell-Out

Well I believe in this
And it's been tested by research
He who fucks nuns
Will later join the church
    --The Clash (from "Death or Glory")


I guess it's pretty comfortable in Stornaway, eh Stephane?
OTTAWA — The Liberals have refused to bring down the minority Conservative government over its alleged failure to combat climate change.

Only 11 Liberals voted for an NDP non-confidence motion condemning the government for failing to respect international climate agreements and for its refusal to adopt opposition-approved legislation to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Other Liberals MPs were present but didn't vote.
With oppositions like this, who needs electoral majorities? Certainly not the Super Secret Harper Imitation Tories, who themselves introduced measures to reduce carbon emissions amounting to a sell-out of the environment:
The Harper government unveiled measures on Monday that would force new oilsands projects to capture and store greenhouse gas emissions and ban construction of new dirty coal plants beginning in 2012.
Note how they slipped the word "new" in there twice, so that conveniently leaves all existing oilsands projects and coal plants completely off the hook. Some of our federal leaders took issue with the new measures:
In Ottawa, politicians panned the new measures. NDP Leader Jack Layton said the plan was "a licence to pollute."

Green party Leader Elizabeth May criticized the capturing techniques as expensive and unproven.

"Right now, it's not cost-effective and there are far more cost-effective ways to reduce carbon dioxide emissions — improving the efficiency with which we use energy and shifting to other energy sources beyond coal and oil," she said at a news conference.

The government has admitted that the technology likely won't be up and running until 2018.
Notice which major federal party leader had nothing to say? Uh-huh. The one who ran for his party's leadership as the candidate focused on sustainable development and making sure Canada lives up to its Kyoto commitments because climate change was too vital not to act immediately.

Around these parts, that's known as a sell-out.

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Sunday, March 09, 2008

Spring anyone?

Big storm still happening here. Definitely the biggest blizzard in what has to be called the toughest winter in living memory. I opened my front door this morning to find six inches of snow up against it, and level with my front walk (which is down three steps from the porch). That's a first.

Up and down my street none of the cars are distinguishable from one another except possibly by their side-view mirrors; they are merely igloo-sized white blobs. The sidewalk plowers evidently gave up on our street some time yesterday evening - they wouldn't be able to get through right now if they wanted to, because the banks on either side are too bulked-up with heavy dense snow. There is a narrow amount of passable street, but it certainly is not a good day for a drive.

CBC radio news is reporting:
- several highway closures and tens of thousands in the Quebec City region without power;
- the Societe de Transport de Montreal (STM) left the Metro stations open all night (without the trains running, however), just for shelter. They had numerous bus routes unable to run, what with four of their seven bus garages unable to open this morning, and lots of drivers and mechanics unable to get in to work (no kidding), meaning public transport is barely functioning.
- not much activity at any airports in the Northeast.

CTV says 40 cm fell on Montreal, which sounds about right.

And there is still some snow falling - or at least I think so, because the wind hasn't died down much.

But the Habs are #1 with a two-point cushion over the Sens, both our goalies are hot, and our balanced offensive attack has racked up more goals than all but one other team in the NHL, so it's a good day nonetheless!

Be strong, fellow Montrealers. This isn't Narnia; this can't go on forever, and the NHL playoffs should be fun this year!

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Saturday, March 08, 2008

If you want to say NO to violence against women...

Guess I'm #198,776. Put your name down here, (that's the United Nations Development Fund for Women) if you want to add your voice to the chorus. Tip 'o the hat to April Reign for putting this out there.

This is why we must never let up, and part of the reason I will always refer to myself as a proud feminist.

And while you're at it, don't forget to inform yourself on how close we are to having anti-abortion legislation enacted by Parliament (there is still time for it to get the kibosh in committee or on third reading in the HoC).

The Green Party of Canada - the only national party led by a woman - weighs in on where women stand today in terms of equality.

Happy International Women's Day (if a day late).

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RESP bill unpopular with SSHITs - Senate less so

To despise or not to despise Senate activism - that is the Peevey Stevie question...

From the CBC (emphasis mine):
The Conservative government wants the Senate to help it defeat a private member's bill that would make contributions to registered education savings plans tax deductible.

The bill, which was first put forward by Liberal MP Dan McTeague two years ago, passed the House of Commons on Wednesday night with a narrow margin of 34 votes.

Because the bill doesn't call on the government to spend money, it was ruled appropriate for private member's bill, but Conservatives say its fiscal implications are steep enough that it should be blocked.

If passed by the Senate, the government predicts the changes would reduce federal revenues by $900 million and provincial governments will lose $450 million.
Seems to me it's a little late to complain about procedure - especially given how painstakingly the SSHITs have worked to effectively shut down the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs (gory details on display here, thanks to Kady).

Besides that, it wasn't too long ago that the Super-Secret Harper Imitation Tories were harping loudly about this same Senate thwarting the will of the HoC with its foot-dragging on the anti-crime omnibus bill.

So stomp your feet, hold your breath, cry to the teacher, pick up your ball and go home. Is that your brand of leadership, Peevey Stevie?

Harpercrite.

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Thursday, March 06, 2008

Disappointed in You, Dion

Please tell me either Bill C-484 will die in committee, or that you will whip the vote if it comes up for a third reading - even (or especially) if it's a confidence vote. Readers: please get all the details about this cloaked anti-abortion bill from Cathie, and carefully study the list of who voted which way. Wondering who's been all over this while we've been busy fussing over Cadman? Check out Unrepentant Old Hippie.
As for you, Mr. Dion...

Please tell me this sort of publicity is a brilliant part of fighting back against the Harper attack ads questioning your leadership.

Please tell me how this is in any way productive?

Hate to throw your own words back at you, but you deserve it:

What was the Leader of the Opposition THINKING?!?

I know what I'm thinking. Although I've never been a Liberal and only once voted that way federally, it's about time for the Green Party and me to get to know each other a whole lot better.

In the meantime, Dion, instead of focusing on the bit players, please train your attack at the top.

Thank you

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UPDATE: Best line of the day on this goes to Dave: "I have a better idea. All of you go to the pub, order a table-full of beer and weep in it. It'll have the same effect."

Mar. 6, 4:00 PM (EST) UPDATE: Thanks to Jennifer Smith for providing the link to the official list, with the undisputedly correct MPs' votes, updated now.

I am so sorry for my sorry-ass Canadian government

(note: this has been cross-posted from my diary on Dailykos)

Dear Americans,

You deserve much better from your northern neighbor. Please accept my sincere apology for my stupid government (I've taken to calling them the SSHITs). As the Globe & Mail has very recently made clear, our Prime Minister's Chief of Staff can't be trusted not to blab confidential information to the media from our allies - or at least the Democratic ones.

I don't blame you if you are upset. If the tables were turned, surely Canadians would be up in arms at any whiff of American influence on our political process.

Of course, it doesn't help when our idiot newsroom at CTV can't keep the facts straight:
The Canadian Press cited an unnamed source last night as saying that several people overheard the remark.

The news agency quoted that source as saying that Mr. Brodie said that someone from Ms. Clinton's campaign called and was "telling the embassy to take it with a grain of salt."

The story was followed by CTV's Washington bureau chief, Tom Clark, who reported that the Obama campaign, not the Clinton's, had reassured Canadian diplomats.

Mr. Clark cited unnamed Canadian sources in his initial report.

There was no explanation last night for why Mr. Brodie was said to have referred to the Clinton campaign but the news report was about the Obama campaign. Robert Hurst, president of CTV News, declined to comment.

The Prime Minister's communications director, Sandra Buckler, has said that Mr. Brodie "does not recall" discussing the issue.
(By the way, both CTV and the Globe and Mail are owned by these people, although under separate editorial control.) Given the results in Ohio and Texas, and the way Clinton made political hay with the story to her advantage, you must all be pretty damn livid right now (I know I am - for multiple reasons).

So please accept my apologies, but also understand that the current government is very moronically neo-con in their thinking, and not at all aligned with the majority of Canadians.

As for the source of the leak, Ian Brodie, here's what one magazine journalist observed in an article published just two months ago:
(Ian Brodie is) 100% the single most influential figure in Harper's inner circle. There are others who have as much impact on policy, or image-making, or managing critical files, or on keeping an eye on the next election. But nobody else brings all those concerns together as Brodie does.

...

He has more direct daily access to Harper than any other senior official, typically starting when he and top bureaucrat Kevin Lynch deliver a morning briefing to the Prime Minister at about 9 a.m
Again, my sincere and humble apologies. We will try very hard to rectify the situation, but first our opposition Liberals will need to find a backbone.

Please bear with us; the outrage over this particular fiasco is by no means ready to peter out on this side of the border. We must have hope.

With Respect,
Scott in Montreal

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

All the crap the SSHITs can dish in just one week

Aside from all the hot & heavy excitement over the Cadman bribery scandal, there has been more than the usual slew of Peevey Stevie outrages to lose one's breakfast over in recent days. To whit:

Bill C-10
Seems the SSHITs have been busy helping out their Freaky Fundie pal Charles McVety work his self-righteous beliefs into Bill C-10. Now, if you happen to be on that facebook site, you never know, it might make a difference to join over 22,600 others in the Group: Keep your Censoring Hands Off of Canadian Film and TV! No to Bill C-10. Just something to consider, because that seems like a pretty large number for a Facebook group that has only been around for less than a week.

And if you're not on Facebook, then at least check out Rick Mercer's fertile imagination let loose in the screening rooms of the censoring Super-Secret Harper Imitation Tories. Belly laughs.

Kissingerian Mischief in the U.S. election campaign
You may have heard of this "leak" from the Canadian embassy that seemed custom-made to undermine the most progressive candidate in the U.S. race, Barack Obama, and help out the Rethuglicans. As I puzzled over earlier this year (til my puzzler was sore like the Grinch), it doesn't make a whole lot of political sense for the SSHITs to spurn one party for another south of the border - especially when the side they are taking is going down in flames magnificently. But war-mongering wouldn't be as high on the agenda in an Obama presidency (he says he'll pull out of Iraq completely), so maybe that's the gist of it.

Budget? What budget?
And if you want to see a real run-down on the "nothing" budget, Paul Wells was kind enough to go through it for all of us (God bless 'im for not nodding off in the process), and show that there is plenty for a rigorous opposition to pick at - if they were so inclined.

Sen. Michael Fortier being his usual arrogant self
He was going to suggest "Let Them Eat Cake" but didn't find it was insulting enough to the electorate (that would be sods like me, whom he refuses to face). Fascist.

All in all, it inspired me to drag out the acoustic guitar and belt out the song I wrote two years ago: Emerson & Fortier, which I might as well reprint now, since so much of it's apparently coming to light. Now if only Dion would pull the plug on these assholes so we could have an election and turf 'em good.

Cheers, all

Emerson & Fortier (Democracy on the Shelf)
They voted for
The man who said
He'd be Harper's
Worst nightmare
And when he won
I thought we had
One more MP
Who'd keep those guys in check

So Gilles, give 'em hell
Don't you let them throw our liberties out as well
Give 'em hell
Stand up in the House and scream and shout and yell
Give 'em hell
Let the boys wed the boys and the girls the girls as well
Give 'em hell
Don't you let them put our freedoms on the shelf

Some volunteered
And gave their time
Worked the phones
At Christmastime
They took their ballots
They marked an X
Next to the one
Who was not a Conservative

So Jack, give 'em hell
Shine a light on their hypocrisy and quell
Any bill
Meant to eat away what Tommy Douglas built
Give 'em hell
The far-right Christian Fundies have to be repelled
Give 'em hell
They've already put our democracy on the shelf

I take my lessons
From those who earned my respect
"If you don't vote, don't bitch"
As Steve Earle said
I did my bit
At the polytheque
Now they've betrayed all that
To sit in Cabinet
With the perks and the limos and all the rest

So Bill, give 'em hell
Don't you let them take our rights away pell-mell
Give 'em hell
Stand up in the House and scream and shout and yell
Give 'em hell
Or they'll ban abortions, starve the arts and sell
Us all out
They've already put our democracy on the shelf

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Tuesday, March 04, 2008

It's the Tape, Stupid

As Don Martin says: Time for an answer, Mr. Harper. Here is a good point, brought up by St├ęphane Dion in the HoC yesterday (quote below translated from the original French - where it was quite effective - on the Liberal party website):
Mr. Dion asked the Prime Minister why he would make such comments if, as he is now claiming, he had no knowledge that such an offer was being made by officials representing the Conservative Party of Canada.

“In that recording, when the author of the book asks the Prime Minister: ‘do you know anything about the insurance policy for a million dollars?’, anybody who didn't know what was going on would have said: ‘what are you talking about?” said Mr. Dion. “But Mr. Harper said: ‘I don't know the details.’”
Ken Dryden also was damned effective, and when challenged by the CPC to repeat his call for Harper's resignation if the allegations prove true, repeated it outside of the chamber.

Ball's in your court, Peevey Stevie.

P.S. to the Libs: you've talked the talk; now walk the walk. I'm sick of this song and dance routine.

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Monday, March 03, 2008

What Mrs. Dona Cadman doesn't have to say

Barely hours after the Super Secret Harper Imitation Tories threatened to sue the Liberals for libel, Dona Cadman released this statement today: (emphasis, mine)
...I recall specifically asking (Stephen Harper) if he was aware of a million dollar insurance policy offer, that upset Chuck so much.

He looked me straight in the eyes and told me he had no knowledge of an insurance policy offer. I knew he was telling me the truth; I could see it in his eyes. He said, yes he'd had some discussions with two individuals about asking Chuck to rejoin the party, but he'd told them they were wasting their time trying to convince Chuck.

From that point forward…. I didn't regard it as a “Party” initiative, but rather; the overzealous indiscretion of a couple of individuals…. whose identity, Chuck never revealed to me.

The specificity of her question to him - as well as the response she attributes to Harper - leaves all kinds of possibilities open to Peevey Stevie to be "aware" of other things, things that could be close, but not quite actual "insurance policy offers" that "upset Chuck".

What she did not say is perhaps more noteworthy. She did not say, for example:

...that there was no bribe offered to her late husband by the Conservative Party of Canada.
...that Mr. Harper ever denied the existence of any bribe to her late husband.
...that Mr. Harper assured her he would never condone such a thing.
...that Mr. Harper in any way regretted anything done or offered by his party under his watch in regards to Mr. Cadman.
...that Mr. Harper, the leader of the CPC, intended to censure the individuals or take any other action in regards to getting to the bottom of her concerns.
...what she thinks her late husband might have thought of Mr. Harper's answer.

Yes, this story has legs and then some. It's as if the SSHITS are just enjoying the fire they started so much they just want to keeping laying on more fuel. I am reminded of Dion's question to Harper in the House last Thursday: "What was the Prime Minister thinking?"

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Dear Mr. Prime Minister of Canada

I see today that your party is planning a libel suit against the leader of the opposition for two articles on the Liberal party website headlined: “Harper knew of Conservative bribery” and “Harper must come clean about allegations of Conservative Bribery.”
The suit, which also names Liberal Deputy Leader Michael Ignatieff and House Leader Ralph Goodale, takes on the Opposition for saying that Mr. Harper knew Conservative party officials attempted to bribe Mr. Cadman to vote against a Liberal budget in the spring of 2005.

Mr. Cadman's wife, Dona Cadman – who is also a Conservative candidate – and her daughter and son-in-law say the dying MP told them that two men representing the Conservatives approached him in the days before the vote and offered a million-dollar life insurance policy in exchange for his support in bringing down the Liberals.
Are you launching this lawsuit so that, no matter what anyone says about it or asks you about it, you can now reply flatly that you would be remiss to comment on the matter since it is now before the courts?

Are you hoping that this will scare away people from broadcasting further on the 2005 tape recording of you explaining that you knew of an offer made to Chuck Cadman by Conservative Party officials, made with your foreknowledge; where you are on record as having stated that you told them (prior to the meeting) they should "make the case" to Mr. Cadman?
"Of the offer to Chuck," (Tom Zytaruk) quotes Mr. Harper as saying, "it was only to replace financial considerations he might lose due to an election, OK. That's my understanding of what they were talking about.

"I don't know the details," he said. "I can tell you that I had told the individuals - I mean, they wanted to do it - but I told them they were wasting their time. I said Chuck had made up his mind he was going to vote with the Liberals. I knew why, and I respected the decision, but they were just, they were convinced there was, there was financial issues and, there may or may not.

"They were legitimately representing the party," Mr. Harper confirmed. "I said 'Don't press him, I mean, you have this theory that it's, you know, financial insecurity, and you know, just, you know, if that's what you say make the case,' but I said 'Don't press it.' "
By launching this lawsuit, are you thinking people might stop mentioning this out of fear that they may also be eventually named in the suit?

Are you hoping that the sluggish rate of the courts will defuse this until such a time as you have a majority in the HoC, or that the country has forgotten the whole affair?

Are you counting on bullying your way through this crisis?

Is it because you can't deny it without lying through your teeth?

Crafty. (Too crafy by half? We shall see).

Because if we are to believe you (when you say today) that it's not true, then you are either splitting very fine hairs at best, or calling others liars - and presumably, the tape recording to be a forgery. After all, the Liberals didn't make it up; they quoted you from the source, journalist/author Tom Zytaruk; and his publisher, Harbour Press. But you're not suing them, are you? And I notice you chose not to sue Conservative candidate Dona Cadman nor her daughter, Jodi, nor Jodi's husband - who have all corroborated that Chuck Cadman told them in separate instances of the $1 million insurance offer in exchange for his Parliamentary vote - for slander (or not yet?)

Shame on you. The office of the Prime Minister of Canada has been tarnished before, as you were always very willing to point out as Opposition leader yourself. Since becoming PM yourself, you have taken it lower and lower and lower.

How much lower, Mr. Prime Minister? How much?

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