Tuesday, July 02, 2024

The end of American democracy

[This ruling] ...creates a law-free zone around the President, upsetting the status quo that has existed since the Founding. This new official-acts immunity now "lies about like a loaded weapon" for any President that wishes to place his own interests, his own political survival, or his own financial gain, above the interests of the Nation… The President of the United States is the most powerful person in the country, and possibly the world. When he uses his official powers in any way, under the majority's reasoning, he now will be insulated from criminal prosecution. Orders the Navy's Seal Team 6 to assassinate a political rival? Immune. Organizes a military coup to hold onto power? Immune. Takes a bribe in exchange for a pardon? Immune. Immune, immune, immune…


The relationship between the President and the people he serves has shifted irrevocably. In every use of official power, the President is now a king above the law.

--Dissenting opinion of SCOTUS Justice Sotomayor


Earlier today - Canada Day for us Canadians, now even prouder so than e'er before, given how much we tend to define ourselves in relation to our southern neighbors (you no longer rate the British "u" in this neighbourhood, bro") - the American republic effectively self-immolated.


As the British would say, that's a wash. As in, when Richard M. Nixon, post-resignation, said in the famous 1977 Frost interview, "When the President does it, that means that it is not illegal."


For my whole life, since learning US history from Saturday morning US of Archie cartoons on American network TV, I have been told of the sanctity of the U.S. Constitution. It used to matter. All pols used to declare their steadfast allegiance to that document, to its principles, above all else. But that's all gone now.


I'm talking about the whole American experiment with democracy. That thing that Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson and Samuel Adams and James Madison and Alexander Hamilton and a few others got going back in the 18th century that was all built on the concepts of the Age of Reason and a Declaration of Independence.


Oh, it was a nice bit of theater for a quarter-millenium, but in the end, the concept of three co-equal branches of government fucked itself over. In a 6-3 decision, the Supreme Court of the United States of America gave carte-blanche to completely immasculate itself to one of the two other branches (the Executive one, the President).


This is all a scam, of course, to help foster criminal immunity to Donald J. Trump, that rascal of rascals, who has crimed his way to the very top of an international crime syndicate masquerading as a government, as U.S. journalist and author Sarah Kendzior so bluntly ascribed this cabal of the omni-rich plutocracy/autocracy/kleptocracy (basically, if it ends in ocracy and isn't prefixed by "dem" you know you're one of the chumps on the outside looking in).


Meanwhile, the sometimes-coherent current President of the United States, Joseph Robinet (that means "sink faucet" in French btw) Biden decried this judgment as "a dangerous precedent… The only limits will be self-imposed by the president."

The presidency is the most powerful office in the world. It's an office that not only tests your judgment; perhaps even more importantly, it's an office that can test your character.

Because you're not only faced with moments where you need the courage to exercise the full power of the office of the presidency. You also face moments where you need the wisdom to respect the limits of the power of the presidency. This nation was founded on the principle that there are no kings in America. Each of us is equal before the law. No one is above the law - not even the President of the United States. But (with) today's Supreme Court decision on Presidential immunity, that fundamentally changed. For all practical purposes, today's decision almost certainly means that there are virtually no limits on what a President can do. This is a fundamentally new principle. And it's a dangerous precedent because the power of the office will no longer be constrained by the law, even and inclucing the Supreme Court of the United States. The only limits will be self-imposed by the President.


I watched this 73-second performance a few times while transcribing it. It leaves me more bereft than hopeful.


Like his steadfast support for the Zionist project of Israel in the Levant, where the worst proclivities of the ruling class render him a worldwide laughingstock while Netanyahu's racist and autocratic government continues its brutal assault on the Gazans and West Bank Palestinians in what will surely be seen in years hence as a classic and particularly heinous crime against humanity, Biden's outrage on this quintessential and existential crisis in the American project lands deflated of the gravity deserving of the matter at hand, regardless of how expertly-coined his comms team has so painstakingly crafted each word for his oh-so-forgiving teleprompter.


Ironically, it was just last year, just before the October 7th Hamas attack on Israel, that the Israeli Supreme Court (as a branch of a governing structure greatly inspired by the American model) found itself forced to affirm its own sanctity within the political structure, thwarting the dictatorial impulses of the wily President. 

Like a good disciple of US President George W. Bush, Bibi knows well the self-preserving balm furnished by being a "War President" prosecuting an esoteric war of unattainable goals. Until All Terrorists Against the USA Are Completely Destroyed, meet: Until All of Hamas Is Completely Destroyed - in both cases, creating more enemies among the survivors with each coldly-calculated war crime. So to perpetuate the state of endless war, and the need to seek refuge in the Great, Strong Protector-Leader Who Will Keep Us All Safe™

(that is Fascism, folks. That scourge that cost some 61 million lives between 1937-45)


Biden obviously doesn't know what he is doing. On one hand, he is trying to uphold the concept of the integrity of the nation-state against naked aggression (Russia's invasion of Ukraine), while on the other, he unquestioningly supports the Israeli-Zionist cause as it follows the worst examples of Nazi Germany in dehumanizing the Palestinians whose only real crime is being in their way (of total domination of some of the most precious real estate in the world).

Carl Bernstein on CNN, earlier today: Multiple sources tell him that there have been at least 15 occasions in the last year and a half “where the president has appeared like he did at that horror show (his debate performance).” Bernstein reports that in the last six months sources have told him that there has been a marked incidence of cognitive decline. He says that his sources have gone to Ron Klain in the last year to express concern about the President losing his train of thought and not having the ability to pick up where he left off.

If this is the most powerful man in the world, one must ask, why does he appear so desperately weak?


As history shows us, it is the perfect recipe for an authoritarian with the very worst impulses to come up and assume power.


Biden must step down. Or the United States is over. And that leaves the world in a very unstable place.


 - 30 -

Further reading:


Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Gaza genocide: We can stop this if we all push

Today in Montreal, the courts ruled in favour of the students camped out in support of the Palestinian people against the overblown Israeli government's genocidal response to the Hamas attack of last October.

McGill University had sought an injunction to forcibly remove them, but ultimately was thwarted by the Quebec Superior Court and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (ahem, Mr. Anthony Housefather).

When I was in school (alas, decades ago), I was introduced to the Clash and like them, I studied how the CIA destroyed the Chilean socialist govt of Allende (the Chilean 9/11) and what Nixon and his Sec. of State Kissinger did to Southeast Asia, Nicaragua (the Sandinistas), El Salvador and on and on, so I have no illusions of the USA being the good guys (but as Canadians, we are kinda' geographically stuck being their international lackeys).

In this case, with how events are spiraling out of control in the Middle East, it seems bigger. It seems like a real point of no return is happening here.

Anyway, I am currently reading a book called They Knew by Sarah Kendzior. She is a 40-something US investigative journalist and she has all the receipts about the corruption between Bibi, the Saudis, Modi, Putin, Trump, the UAE (and many other powerful US pols, Republican and Democratic), and yes, Stephen Harper and his patently anti-democratic, Orwellian-named group, the International Democratic Union, that is working hard behind the scenes to put autocratic dictators in power everywhere they can. 

Meanwhile, I see Egypt joining with South Africa in calling on the ICJ to prosecute Israel for genocide, breaking with a truce they've had with Israel since I was a little boy (also surely breaking former US President Jimmy Carter's 99 year-old heart - although I can almost picture him silently nodding in resigned accord).

But at the same time, we must be encouraged by these student protests.

When I was a young college student, I watched the Berlin Wall fall - the Iron Curtain as well -  and the pressure people all over the world put on the Afrikaaners, Botha and later deKlerk, to free Nelson Mandela and eventually end Apartheid in South Africa. 

Yeah, no way would you catch us playing Sun City.

Mandela's ANC was a "terrorist" and "communist" organization, as our news outlets pointedly reminded us at every opportunity. It isn't without irony that Hamas and Hezbollah are listed as such today. 

Now, they are both surely ruthlessly brutal in their methods (Hamas especially, as we saw on October 7, 2023), but when a people have been put in a position where they see no other way to survive, what else should one expect?

As even the untrustworthy Israeli government attests, the Palestinians in the West Bank (including their leaders) had nothing to do with the October attack, despite the fact that for decades, their physical environment has been forcibly shrunk. Lately, their homes have even being torched or stolen by Jewish "settlers" (at the pleasure of the Israeli justice system) with no recourse. 

Meanwhile, this current starvation and ethnic cleansing in Gaza is a Bibi-made horror. 

Essentially, Joe Biden is making this horror story possible with his almost maudlin, unwavering support of this Israeli government, sealed with the kiss of UN Security Council vetoes and endless shipments of bombs and arms. Clearly, Biden must stop Bibi and the Likud and the cabal of Kahanists and their other dehumanizing rightwing allies currently in charge of Israel, and he should have done so months ago.

So I made a small donation today to UNRWA to help alleviate the Gazans' suffering. And I put my moral support behind the protesting students, and I wish to remind you all that at least one time in my life, we witnessed a change that came about from the steadfast pressure common people put on South Africa to end Apartheid, and it actually worked.

And maybe, just maybe, we can do it again.

If we all push.


- 30 -

PS: please go to wikipedia.org or juancole.com or aljazeera.com or cbc.ca for supporting links not provided. Or better yet, get yourself some hard copies of what's going on now. The links might not last forever.

PS 2: shameless addition of self-aggrandizing video but hey, it's also a gol-dang catchy song: 

Keep your feet planted, folks.


Tuesday, May 23, 2023

To the Honourable Anthony Housefather

Hello! I just donated to your riding association, although I happen to live in the PM's riding. I wonder what he is thinking?

I did this to reward your courage in standing up for the constitution and voting against inexplicable party lines on Bill C-13. I am no lawyer, but it does seem dubious for a federal law to cite a provincial law that is itself still under judicial challenge as a possibly unconstitutional piece of legislation. I hope this small gesture helps the Liberal party understand the folly of incorporating the dishonest, cynical Quebec language law into Bill C-13, which I was impressed to see you voted against. Meanwhile others in your caucus chose either to put water in their wine as they answered the whip, or step down (such as the honourable MP for NDG-Westmount, Marc Garneau).

I was born in Sherbrooke and now live in Montreal, with two children educated in the CSDM and a third (as well as a grandchild) educated in English school boards (in a half-half English/French curriculum). I have never lived outside of Quebec, yet have always felt less than fully welcome here, but also not quite at home in any other province I have visited - the classic anglo-Quebec conundrum, eh? I am afraid my French is good but not great. Meanwhile I am proud that my kids' French is as easy for them as their mother tongue. I imagine this is a similar story to others you have heard over the years, from more than a few of your own constituents.

Learning French to the level required for much of this province's employers' needs is a great challenge for so many Canadians who are also English-speaking Quebecers; we try to learn and understand and speak and use French well enough to fit in. We hope to not only find our place, but to thrive in this environment that is becoming more and more unforgiving to those who cannot claim to be fully francophone.

So the last thing we need is for Ottawa to abandon the vision of a bilingual country.
Proficiency in one of the two official languages (but not the other) must not mean lowered expectations from our fundamental Charter rights if it is the "wrong language" of the two for the province in which they reside. I appreciate that you get this, and that you are (bizarrely) alone in the Liberal caucus in trying to maintain the integrity of the Charter in this way.

I recall my own MP, Justin Trudeau, celebrating the Charter's anniversary in earlier years as LPC leader, and I am gobsmacked that today he doesn't seem to understand the importance that his own father - and every other preceding LPC leader since - had placed in the inviolability of the Charter.

The Charter is the culmination of everything our ancestors built to distinguish us as a polity and it should be revered across the land, full stop. Allowing it to be degraded, and legitimizing its degradation by enshrining a provincial law that brazenly and even seditiously undermines it, is an abomination to the document signed in 1982 by QEII, and puts us subservient to any lickspittle Canadian-opportunist to wriggle their way up from the muck, be they a Bloqist or a Pollievre.

I attach here a picture of my great-great-great grandfather, Norman Murray, taken somewhere around what is now Cookshire, QC. He was a Scotsman by birth, pushed off his ancestral land by British loyalists; he and others of my ancestors from Ireland, Scotland and England all found their way to the Eastern Townships of Quebec, not necessarily as Empire Loyalists, but as people hoping to find a future in a fair and just new world, where the weight of old grievances about heritage might be shed, in favour of building a fresh future in a new world of egalitarian hope.

He did just that. My whole family line did, in fact: McCallums, Hodges, Richardsons, Stevensons, Cowans and others that landed in the Eastern Townships in the 18th and 19th centuries. My wife is a French Canadian with at least one family name of Scottish descent, but raised bilingual and comfortable in both the English and French communities - or if you will, our common, unlabeled, community. My 9-year old daughter's best friend, meanwhile, is a Nigerian immigrant who is striving to learn French (his Mom too) and adapting in an environment that sadly tells him systemic racism isn't a thing in Quebec, at least, according to the Premier.

In short, I don't want my kids or theirs to have to bear labels that render them somewhat less free than their fellow citizens. Listening to you in the local media, I feel that inherently you know how to make this case within your caucus, in a way that escapes the criticism of being hyperbolic or alarmist.

I hope you know there are many more Montrealers and Quebecers that applaud you and hope that we can keep the Charter inviolable (and indeed, restore the Quebec Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms to its own original expression of collegial high-minded clarity), as all individual rights ought to be in a free and democratic society such as ours. 

To see our rights subjected to blanket use of the notwithstanding clause - used so cravenly by the CAQ in Bill 96 - is not becoming of a supposedly modern constitutional monarchy. And if the constitution part is left to the whims of any populist government that comes along, then all we are left with is the other part. Now, I beg your pardon, but I don't believe King Charles III is at all up to the task, leaving us with a political black hole of gravitational heft to suck us all into itself. So my contribution to your riding association is meant both as a thank you, and to foster a little more oxygen for the fire in your belly.

As the Honourable Clifford Lincoln said, "rights are rights." Mr. Trudeau, copied here, I know you have bravely stood up for many politically difficult but important principles, and for that I remain a supporter. But how could you forget the Charter!? Mr. Housefather is right on this one.


Scott in Montreal

Here on the 20th November, 2023, I now find myself rather at odds with Mr. Housefather - but on another matter.

Turns out he is a turncoat to justice, happy to make common cause with the fascistic Conservatives informed by their evangelical Christian doctrines that seek to bring upon the Apocalypse, and undermine the message of the Canadian Prime Minister, who is working to forestall genocidal treatment of the Palestinians in Gaza by the completely off-leash Israeli government under the criminal Netanyahu.

If Anthony Housefather had an ounce of integrity he would hold Netanyahu to the same smell-test as his own party leader.

The fact he has flown to Israel to support this criminally overblown, inhumane, response and its nakedly genocidal tendencies that level-headed Jewish scholars find they need to call out, leaves me heartbroken. What Hamas did on October 7 was absolutely horrific, but I don't want to live in a world where this overblown response from Israel is in any way justified. 

This is the 21st Century. There is no supremacy of any race, creed, religion or mother tongue.





- 30 -


Monday, December 05, 2022

Oh, Carey

(apologies to Steve Perry)

You shouldn't have posted

Knowing how Montrealers feel

And you should've known

Dec. 6 and what it means

Oh, I must've been a dreamer

And I thought you were someone else

'Course you're livin' in a bubble!

Oh, Carey, regarding guns

Hold on, hold your fire

Oh, Carey, "poly" means

Lionizing Lepine

Oh I want to let go

You'll go on hurting this city

You'd be better off alone

If you can't see the misogyny

But you know that there're clauses

Oh, that you can still own guns for hunting game

Can't you feel we're hurting?

On and on

Oh, Carey, regarding guns

Hold on! Hold your fire!

Oh, Carey, the CCFR?!

WTF?! They're using you!

But I should've seen this one

Long ago, far away

And you should've been resting

We hear you've got

Such gimpy knees

Oh, Carey, regarding guns,

Hold fire, on this day

Oh, Carey, get some PR

That was tone deaf

Monday, November 07, 2022

Project: The Good People Network

Maybe if we can just all be there for each other


PS: It's up to all of us to kick the shit out of this life while we're still here.

The dead wouldn't have it any other way, wot?

Sunday, September 20, 2020

Worries and worts

"We'll inherit the Earth, but we don't want it!"



 "Thought the eighties were bad enough..."

"Free speach got stolen by a pack of thieves...

"Silence is death"


The voices of dissent

Tuesday, March 03, 2020

It's the Econom... I mean, Senate, Stupid!

For my younger audience, note that the 1992 Bill Clinton campaign was driven by the message: It's the Economy, Stupid! (internally only).


Super Tuesday results are coming in and I see three things:

1) Being unjustly targeted by Trump is turning out to be a very good thing for Joe Biden.
2) Being a candidate with long coattails to help Senate races is a good thing for Joe Biden.
3) Being a better candidate for President is useless now that we know the silly 'merican republic can somehow lurch along for three-plus years with a knob that is exponentially more DOOFUS than POTUS in charge of the executive branch (not unlike some big-ass U.S. corporations I have had the misadventure of working for, I might add).

There are something like a hundred amazingly progressive pieces of legislation the Democratic Party controlled House of Representatives has passed (least of which, Impeachment of Preznit Donald J. Trump) that the Rethuglican Senate Majority Leader fucker (and I use that term graciously) Mitch McConnell, palpateenishly relishes stonewalling in his chamber. I have a friend who is a very very smart and very very good man, thinking very very hard about urban ecology and doing very very good things with this knowledge to help society not collapse.

He is an American who today lives in Portland, OR, and was in Montreal for a year, and will soon return for good (hopefully) if no asteroids destroy us on or about the 29th of April,  2020.

While I have incredibly good instincts about Canadian politics at times, my take on the shit south of this border is way wobblier, which was proven in 2018 when I sadly told my friend that I predicted BOTH houses of Congress would surely turn to the control of the Dems (huzzahs all around)!

Not so, he thought, knowing far better than I the peccadilloes of the individual races and their respective states where they were being fought. I was struck by his sadness about the matter. It came from a man with a heart that cares deeply about far more than his own kin, who understood the bigger picture, and the SCOTUS appointments, and the many other federal judge appointments, that would all hinge upon the control of the United States Senate. There have been many. The good people at wikipedia have made a comprehensive list. These judges make a myriad of judgments, and you can be damned sure they aren't going to come down on the side of the people who don't pull the Rethuglicans' strings (very, very, rich people, of course, and no others).

I have since learned that something like 70% of Senate power is in the hands of voters from rural areas, due to the two Senators per state allocation, coupled with extremely high population differences between individual states. I feel this may have made sense in 1776, when 13 states came together to form a union, as they put it. But in contemporary USA, it creates a huge imbalance of influence; unlike us in Canada, where our Senate is an upper body with much less say-so on matters that matter. I daresay our Canadian parliamentary system has better built-in bulwarks (imperfect, I admit) against such oligarchical control manifesting itself.

What we lack is a federation that can protect provinces from despotic premieres like Ford in Ontario, Kenney in Alberta, and Legault here in Québec, from fucking us over, since the provinces control so much more of what affects our daily existence, such as Health, Education, and Natural Resources. But that is a topic for another day.

Back to my point: Elizabeth Warren, in an earlier USA, would be a gobsmackingly perfect and unbeatable candidate, looking at her knowledge, policies and political talents. But when it's the Senate, Stupid, a guy like Joe Biden - who has been a Senator for a bazillion years, and who presided over it as Vice-President for eight of the last eleven years - is your obvious man if your Big Strategy is to wrest control of that most powerful chamber from the Rethuglicans.

Democracy is what brought this about. The best of all imperfect modes of government. May they actually have an honest election come November. This Canadian is doubtful, and morosely so.

- 30 -

Friday, December 06, 2019

30 years ago but never to be forgotten

Geneviève Bergeron (1968-1989)
Hélène Colgan (1966-1989)
Nathalie Croteau (1966-1989)
Barbara Daigneault (1967-1989)
Anne-Marie Edward (1968-1989)
Maud Haviernick (1960-1989)
Maryse Laganière (1964-1989)
Maryse Leclair (1966-1989)
Anne-Marie Lemay (1967-1989)
Sonia Pelletier (1961-1989)
Michèle Richard (1968-1989)
Annie St-Arneault (1966-1989)
Annie Turcotte (1969-1989)
Barbara Klucznik-Widajewicz (1958-1989)

May they rest in eternal peace. And may they ever remind us of the need to eradicate violence against women, and indeed, hate in general.

- 30 -

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

This Andrew Scheer guy is not a good guy

All day, Liberal candidates, such as Marc Garneau, have been tweeting and re-tweeting a little snippet of Canadian political history that really underscores Andrew Scheer's deep disrespect for this country and its most valued institutions:

https://twitter.com/MarcGarneau/status/1184468914123751424?s=20 https://twitter.com/MarcGarneau/status/1184468914123751424?s=20https://twitter.com/MarcGarneau/status/1184468914123751424?s=20

from Wikipedia.org:

"O Canada" (French: Ô Canada) is the national anthem of Canada. The song was originally commissioned by Lieutenant Governor of Quebec Théodore Robitaille for the 1880 Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day ceremony; Calixa Lavallée composed the music, after which, words were written by the poet and judge Sir Adolphe-Basile Routhier. The original lyrics were in French; an English translation was published in 1906.[1] Multiple English versions ensued, with Robert Stanley Weir's version in 1908 gaining the most popularity, eventually serving as the basis for the official lyrics enacted by Parliament.[1] Weir's lyrics have been revised three times, most recently when An Act to amend the National Anthem Act (gender) was enacted in 2018.[2] The French lyrics remain unaltered. "O Canada" had served as a de facto national anthem since 1939, officially becoming the country's national anthem in 1980 when Canada's National Anthem Act received royal assent and became effective on July 1 as part of that year's Dominion Day (today's Canada Day) celebrations...

"There are no regulations governing the performance of "O Canada", leaving citizens to exercise their best judgment. When it is performed at an event, traditional etiquette is to either start or end the ceremonies with the anthem, including situations when other anthems are played and for the audience to stand during the performance."

When Liberal MP Mauril Bélanger perished on August 15, 2016, his modest bill to de-gender the lyrics of the english version was still two years from seeing Royal Assent, held up on Scheer's say-so by the Conservatives in the Senate. But at least the Right Honourable Mauril Bélanger lived to see his bill pass third reading, wherein Andrew Scheer pointedly (and uniquely) stayed seated while all his fellow Parliamentarians stood and sang the anthem's newly female-inclusive lyrics.

(Again, from wikipedia.org):
"On May 6, 2016, consideration of Bélanger's bill to make the national anthem gender neutral was blocked when Conservative MPs used up the hour of debate time and refused consent to two motions backed by both the Liberals and the NDP to extend debate and allow time to hold a vote to send the bill to committee.[13][14] As Bélanger's health was deteriorating, Liberal MP Greg Fergus described the Conservative's procedural delay tactics as an attempt to prevent Bélanger from seeing the bill passed, while Conservative MPs insisted that they were debating an important issue and had followed parliamentary procedure.[13][14] Fellow Liberal MP Linda Lapointe gave up her timeslot for private member's business on May 30 to allow Bélanger's bill to be heard and go to a vote for it to be sent to committee the following day.[15] In June 2016, the bill passed its third reading with a vote of 225 to 74 in the House of Commons.[16] In July 2017, the bill was in its third, and final, reading in the Senate;[17] the bill was passed on January 31, 2018 and received royal assent on February 7, 2018 to change "in all thy sons command" to "in all of us command", after Bélanger had already died."

I wonder how many other Canadians feel a little sick to their stomach to see Scheer's churlish, petty behaviour in this moment. It has been haunting me all day.

I hope this anti-Canadian dipshit does not become our Prime Minister next week. It would be a horror story of Trumpian proportions.

- 30 -

Sunday, October 06, 2019

10-18-2019 UPDATE: Scott wrote to his Green Party candidate

*** 10-18-2019 UPDATE: after waiting 12 days for a response from Mr. Daniel Green, (also after having voted in the advance polls for his Liberal opponent, Rachel Bendayan - oh well) today, at 3:10 pm, I received the following response:

Hello Randboro,

Thank you for your email.

We at the Green Party of Canada understand that you were troubled by a recent story on the Green Party of Canada’s stance on abortion.

Rest assured it is, and has always been, the Green Party of Canada’s policy that all women must have timely access to safe, legal abortions.

Although the Leader does not have the power to whip votes, all Green Party Members of Parliament must endorse the Green Party’s values, including a firm support of a woman’s right to choose. There is zero chance an elected representative of our party will ever reopen the abortion debate.

We vet all candidates to ensure they agree the abortion debate is closed in Canada. Any who disagree are not allowed to run.

We hope that we can continue to count on your support.


Kat Lorimer


So... I guess I wasn't wrong at all, was I? How can anyone know how their MP would vote on any issue before them, given this canned response from the Party HQ?

*** END of 10-18-2019 UPDATE (original post below) ***

Given the nature of the Green Party of Canada, and their leader's stance that all votes will not be whipped, I decided that I would reach out to my local GPC candidate, Daniel Green, to understand his own positions:

Mr. Green,

As a committed humanitarian and former GPC financial officer for the riding of Papineau, (but mostly because of my devotion to the continuance of life on this planet) I voted for you in the recent by-election and was pleased to see you came in a strong third.

I did not know then about your party's position on not whipping votes.

That said, I feel the Green party platform is insufficient for me to determine whether or not my vote should go to you again on the 19th of October. I find your bonafides on environmental issues to be substantial, however it behooves me to ensure your stances on other contentious issues would not leave me crestfallen should you come to represent me and the others in Outremont riding in the HoC.

For this reason, when Justin Trudeau speaks clearly about women's right to choose on the decision of abortion, I rest confident that your rival, Ms. Bendayan, will not let me down. When he speaks about any other policy, I feel confident in voting for my Liberal candidate, even if the policies they put forth today are less than the climate crisis demands. Because they give me confidence they will be what they portend to be, as a government. As of now, they have my vote.

Am I wrong?

Scott Murray

Friday, October 04, 2019

Top Ten Other Things Andrew Scheer Didn't Lie About, But Was Never Asked

"I've never tried to hide that (I am a dual US-Canadian citizen)," he said in a scrum with reporters in Halifax. "I've never been asked about it by Canadians. My father has always been open about where he comes from. I haven't been asked about it."--Andrew Scheer
10. Being a vampire.
9. Didn't wear underwear as House Speaker. Not even once!
8. Still waiting for that peach fuzz to break out into an actual beard.
7. Has promised Faith Goldy's firstborn to a little man known for spinning straw into gold, who also came up with enough last minute votes to magically give him the CPC leadership!
6. Underwent conversion therapy to seem human-like to Earthlings.
5. Likes to do his toenails with manly black polish - just like Gene Simmons!
4. Forever pestering buddy Jim Vallance to jam out a song he wrote called Summer of 2003
3. As Prime Minister, plans to create a ministry of Reminding Folks he was Down With Brexit Before It Was Cool.
2. Likes to call various world leaders out of the blue to request they investigate Donald Trump's political rivals, offering saskatoon berry jam for the favour.

And the Number One Other Thing Andrew Scheer Didn't Lie About, But Was Never Asked:

1. Has been secretly meeting with Jason Kenney for years in a totally normal and extremely heterosexual way, just to chit-chat and play rock, paper, scissors, okay?! Jeesh, you guys!!

- 30 -  

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Montreal: March for Climate Action 09-27-2019

When I hear Greta Thunberg damning the world at the UN...


...I am reminded of exactly where I was when I wrote No Healing: 



Messing around
Digging up tarpits
And we'll burn it all away

Mining that gold
Exporting asbestos
Trade the future for today

We don't know why
But I've got a feeling
It could be a long time
Before we start the healing

Frack that shale
Strip that mountain
Extract it all away

Drain all brains
With the freshwater
Rape the future for today's gain

And I've got a feeling
It'll be a lifetime
Before we staunch the bleeding

Hiding your crimes
Building more prisons
Disregard the scientists

Mute all truths
Reason is treason
Ruled by ideology

And I know I've
Got a sickening feeling
Could be a long time
And there won't be no healing

They are expecting 300,000 in the streets of Montreal tomorrow. Hope to see you there.

Wednesday, September 04, 2019

Bollocks, Bollocks, and... what else? Ah yes, more BOLLOCKS

They are lying to you. Deliberately. Methodically. They use a playbook that was written by a maniac who believed so strongly in his own accidentally assigned tribal genome that he fatally poisoned his entire brood to prove his horrifically misguided point.

That is the usual end-game for the fools who look no further than skin colour or tribe.

Dear readers,

Once upon a time, there was a thing we called bandwidth.

It was limited, and precious. You had to own a segment of it, and it was doled out by the CRTC.

If you rated...

If you could prove yourself worthy to the

Public Body

Responsible to the Elected Representatives

Owing their authority

To a free and fair Democratic vote of their


(You and Me)




the Power

to Decide




Wanted this bandwidth

To persuade other constituents with

Merited it

Based upon their commitment

To the Betterment of the audience by broadcasting important and

Truthful information

Over these channels

Given to them

In Trust

By The People

To ensure faithful communication of



And of opinion

Based on




We can all publish

Whatever rubbish

We wish

Not unlike the American homicidal maniac (TM)

Holding onto his 2nd Amendment rights

In God We Trust

American you say??

Why yes, because these platforms are



(ABC = Google + this blog on blogger, and the notoriously easy to push stupid crap anyone made up youtube)


(Facebook + Instagram)


Here in Canada, we created this thing called the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council, but that does not have the slightest bearing on any crap we have from social media sites like those I mentioned above.

So we are impoverished of fact-based, multi-sourced information if we fail to go to the sources that abide by those standards.

Please, with a federal election on the horizon, avail yourselves not so much of:

- blogs such as mine...

- whatever BS you find in your FB newsfeed (or other social media "viral" crap)

and go here, where there are controls in place:






and anyone else beholden to Standards that you may call BULLSHIT on and expect a level of fact-checking decency

Now, don't expect them to get it all right all the time. Journalism is an art of imperfect humans, mind.

But do try to not get pulled in by the shit-spewers inspired by the likes of Goebbels.

It does you ill.

As it does us all

Good day, and peace and good (critical) reading to you all.

- 30 -

Saturday, February 02, 2019

The Hate -- Original Song #38

As we approach the sad 30th anniversary of a brutal hate crime that left a stain on my beautiful city, I find to my surprise this song of mine, written many years ago, absent from the history of this blog. No longer. RIP, Joe

Well you know something's been eating me
Concerns something that fell from your mouth last week
I heard you say, "He's one of those"
Made me think of a youth named Joe Rose

They killed him on a bus you see
Along with their humanity
And I doubt this song will change a thing
But maybe I'll feel better if I sing

I don't know why they hate so strong
But it just keeps going on

Rose's dad doesn't understand
He loved his son like any man
But the boy was gay so they hated him
In this city whose motto means live and let live
And it's wrong to think all bird are doves
But those who hate can also love
And if there's one thing I can't trust
It's when you separate folks into them and us

I don't know why they hate so strong
But it just keeps going on
I don't know why they hate so strong
But it just keeps going on
I don't know why they hate so strong
But it just keeps going on
I don't know why they hate so strong
But it's gone on far too long

- 30 -

Tuesday, December 04, 2018

My grand-daughter was born December 3, 2018

She will not reach 12, apparently, before life on this planet is doomed to be inhabitable for humanity.

I take that very seriously. As soon as I became a father, that kind of thing started to matter - vibrantly; excruciatingly. Until then, it served as ...what? An excuse for nihilism? Bottoms up!

With my wife, I share a four-cylinder, gas-guzzling SUV, but at least we live in a highly energy-efficient condo in Montreal, heated (and powered) exclusively from renewable hydro-electric power, thanks to Robert Bourassa and other prescient Quebec politicians. We use public transit as much as possible, walk, or use shared services to economize, and understand that our gas costs more if we fill up on the island of Montreal, so we only take the car when we really have to.

And I expect this will be the last internal combustion vehicle we own - and appropriately so. Energy usage will not decline, but here in Quebec, I feel that we really understand that reality as a fundamental concept, alongside the practicality of maximizing our facility to harness whatever renewable energy resources we can access.

I have listened to the voices telling us the oil in Alberta and Saskatchewan will replace higher carbon-footprint coal used in China currently (to manufacture products we buy to assuage our Dollar-store need to consume, consume, consume extra plastics to make our lives more fulfilling - and yes, that rabbit-hole I have plunged myself into on many occasions myself). I call bullshit on that "need" to get the tarsands product to tidewater. Justin Trudeau is nominally championing that in order to (lamely) show he is not like his dad; as if he could somehow square that policy with being on the right side - i.e.: the non-suicidal side.

What to do?

I like JT because he espouses ideals that are high-mindedly progressive towards correction of bias and prejudice generally. But for all our sakes, this is the time to realise there is a bigger, more pressing crisis that requires his leadership. Time to stop playing nice and put his clout to the one issue that merits war-like attention: arresting climate change.

After all, what planet does he presume his kids and mine might inhabit?

- 30 -

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Every Canadian should read Bob Rae's column in the Walrus

It is all about Canada-USA relations, and in particular, this uncomforting reality:

"It’s time we understood just how far apart our two countries are and act accordingly"

The whole text is here.

Interestingly, it comes just hours after the publication of this warning for the EU from the Guardian:
EU must 'prepare for worst-case scenarios' under Trump, top official warns

From that article, from European Council president, Donald Tusk:

“More and more people are starting to believe that only strong-handed authority, anti-European and anti-liberal in spirit, with a tendency towards overt authoritarianism, is capable of stopping the wave of illegal migration.”

“If people believe them, that only they can offer an effective solution to the migration crisis, they will also believe anything else they say. The stakes are very high. And time is short.”

Time for all of us to stop ignoring the painful truth. If you're not with Trump, you're not only against Trump,...

you're at war

- 30 -

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Stoke the Fire / Untermenschen (repost)

Stoke the Fire (performed live circa 2011)

Caught in machinations
Beyond your power?
Busy earning a living
You stoke the fire

And you wonder how they
Could let it happen
No time to question
How big is your picture?

Successive generations will be quick to damn us
Maybe they'll understand us

Recipe for murder:
Divide the horror
Give the people a scapegoat
Then point the finger

Gain complicity
Reward efficiency
Give the people procedures
They'll die to please

Perhaps the question to ask is: Does it really matter
Who pulled the trigger
Who filled the gas tanks
Who stoked the fires
That burn us



Monday, June 18, 2018

I'm with Lloyd - the USA is not a safe third country right now

I enjoyed another fantastic Father's Day in the company of my children, but all the while I fought back tears whenever I heard more of the sordid tales of asylum seekers' treatment at the hands of the US Department of Homeland Security. It's full-on psychological torture to the parents and to the kids to whisk them away from the only thread of security they know: one another.

So when a great humanitarian like Lloyd Axworthy has had enough of this to speak out forcefully, I believe all Canadians must listen.

Here is the entirety of his and Allan Rock's opinion piece from The Globe and Mail:

Canada and the United States added a new dimension in 2004 by agreeing to regard each other as, in effect, safe havens. Each barred asylum-seekers arriving from the other at official points of entry, reasoning that no credible claim of persecution could be made in either.
But things have changed. Donald Trump’s administration’s harsh approach to migrants has created fear and uncertainty among asylum-seekers in the United States. Sadly, the United States no longer offers them a safe haven. Beyond demonizing migrants, Mr. Trump’s appointees have adopted inhumane practices.
Asylum-seekers are being detained at astonishing rates in the United States, often in deplorable conditions. Despite having no criminal record, many are jailed while their applications for asylum are pending, mostly in private prisons. Human Rights First reports that three-quarters of asylum-seekers in U.S. immigration proceedings are detained at some point, compared to 16 per cent of refugee claimants in Canada. Recent reports about the treatment of migrant children, in particular, demonstrate just how unsafe the U.S. immigration system has become: U.S. officials recently admitted that they “lost track” of nearly 20 per cent of the children formerly in the custody of the Office of Refugee Resettlement.
Despite this fiasco, Attorney-General Jeff Sessions recently announced a policy of separating asylum-seekers from their children, some as young as toddlers. The United Nations calls this an “arbitrary and unlawful interference in family life, and a serious violation of the rights of the child.”
Consider Ms. L, an asylum-seeker who fled the Democratic Republic of the Congo with her seven-year-old daughter. After they were detained upon arrival in the United States, Ms. L’s daughter was taken from her and sent to a facility more than 2,000 miles away. They were jailed across the country from each other for four months. Ms. L. fled brutality only to have her daughter taken from her arms by U.S. officials: Who could blame her if, feeling unsafe, she wanted to cross into Canada to seek protection?
And those fleeing from the United States to Canada have good reason to fear harm if the United States returns them to their countries of origin. The vast majority are from war-torn states with high levels of violence and human-rights violations. Most are at serious risk of persecution and torture in their native lands. In fact, more than 50 per cent of the refugee claims made by persons who enter Canada irregularly are granted.
Some Canadians have demanded that the “safe third country” prohibition on entry be extended to cover the entire border, not just official entry points. But surely that is the wrong approach. It would seal off any chance to escape for those many who are being mistreated and put at grave risk of return by a U.S. administration with vastly different policies from the one we dealt with in 2004.
In our view, a much better solution would be to suspend the “safe third country” arrangement until conditions in the United States change. The United States is no longer “safe” for asylum seekers. And, unlike 2004, we can no longer regard our duty to them as met simply because they are within U.S. jurisdiction. Just as our government responded with strength to Mr. Trump’s absurd trade sanctions, we should make crystal clear that we will not be complicit in his mistreatment of refugees.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his government have earned Canada a well-deserved reputation as a humane refuge for the forcibly displaced. And Canadians, in communities across the land, have opened their hearts and their homes to sponsor and support refugees. Let’s make sure that our policies at the border reflect “the Canadian way” and are worthy of the values we cherish.

Canada is a huge land. Stinkin' huge. We have ample space, resources, and no reason to turn people away who need refuge. I know we are lucky here. The people whom we welcome are my neighbours and co-workers and children's best friends. They are not at all unlike my ancestors who fled potato famine or religious intolerance or economic destitution just a handful of generations ago. We can always welcome a few more. We are one humanity, and we need to act like it.

- 30 -

Friday, March 30, 2018

Preying on Me - Original Song #37

I was living in the Mile End
Lovely place to find a friend
Course you know no one there
Is just like me

English, French, Greeks
Indigenous and artists
Lots of folks I call the blister-hearted
And that includes the Hasids

They’re always doing lots of prayin'
They gotta do a lot of prayin'
Gotta do a lot of prayin'
For sinners like me

And meanwhile on the internet
Trolls are spinning
Dark dark webs
They’re telling all these scary tales
Once upon a lie

They spread hate to create bigots
Then they churn and circulate all that made-up shit
Like that ain’t what toilets are for

The trolls are doing lots of preyin'
Yeah they’re doing lots of preyin'
They’re out there doing lots of preyin'
On the young and the weak

Now morons out there in the war rooms
Making plans to cloud us in mushrooms
They can't believe they can't play with
All their nuclear toys

They're doing lots of playing
Armageddon games they're playing
And Christ, it never ever stops preying
Preying on me

Now that brings me back to those Hasids
They aren't too caught up in our consumerist greed
And they may not be your creed
But I think they seem to know what we need

We need to do a lotta prayin'
There ain't nothing left but prayin'
I'm really down with all the prayin'

- 30 -