Canadian Politics from Canada's Centre

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Privacy Policy for Email and RSS Subscribers

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This should have been done much earlier, but late is better than never, right? Or is that never is later than better? Well, anyways, I just wanted to formally institute our privacy policy with regards to our email and RSS subscribers. It's quite simple actually. Your information is not an "asset" of ours. It's yours, not to be disclosed, shared, sold and all that other legal mumbo-jumbo that means we won't pass your email on to spammers or anyone else.
Guided Tour: 3 Tools for You (Previous) - Tour Overview (back to start)
If you're wondering why I've said some readers come from this place or that place, it's just that I thought you might care to know who your fellow readers are, and also to let you know we're interested in you. It's kind of like letting your friend know he's reading an worthwhile publication, because the Prime Minister and the head of MENSA also read it.

Again, we're not passing on your personal information in any way shape or form. We understand that your private information is, well, private.

Related articles:
Help Wanted
Dear Readers
Reader Rewards and Loyalty Program
Some tools to help our readers

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Liberals Create Renewal Commissions

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The Liberal Party of Canada (LPC) is creating what it terms renewal comissions to help give the party a new direction and vision. Including MPs and grassroots militants (sorry, the mainstream media got me there... I meant to say 'activists'), the commissions are the Liberal party's answer to the Canadian Policy Wiki - an interactive way for Canadians to get involved in formulating policy.

"The goal [...] is to reach out to [...] Canadians across the country. This is especially important as we are faced with a leadership contest and need to be election-ready within a very short time period," said Mr. Michael Eizenga, the Liberal Party's President.

"Public policy work done by the Renewal Commission task forces will serve as a catalyst for discussions of policy process leading up to the Leadership Convention in Montreal in December."

Personally, I think this is a genius stroke from the Libs. They're integrating 'user generated content', as modern Web specialists call the interactive participation, into their traditional political structures and will likely come out strong as a bull pumped up on steroids if these commissions are run well. A sincere 'Bravo' to the Libs. If of course, they're being honest...

Related articles:
Canadian Political System
Liberal Frank McKenna resigns
Liberal and NDP bloggers fight
Interview with Nicolas Thibodeau, defeated NDP candidate in Mount-Royal

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Mediocre Media 2

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This is the second edition of the Mediocre Media, highlighting errors, bias, hidden agendas and other problems with the (usually mainstream-) media. Bloggers of all political stripes are welcome to submit posts for inclusion in the article. Here's all the information on submission guidelines and the easy process to have a post included in the Mediocre Media carnival. *Updated since first publishing*

I need to give special thanks to Ann "Dr Sanity" Santy and Gavriel "AbbaGav" Raanan for their great help in publicizing this, when it was still just a concept. On a related note, anyone interested in hosting this in the future should just contact me.
In addition, thankyous go out to the previous edition's contributors, namely
Joerg at Atlantic Review,
AbbaGav at AbbaGav,
My father at Mindware Dental Educational Seminars,
Jon Swift at Jon Swift,
Muse at Shiloh Musings,
Josh Cohen at Multiple Mentality, and finally
Barak at IRIS Blog.

Just before we begin, I'd like to invite you to see how I think bloggers might be empowered to fight the terrible Al Jazeera television network, which advocates violence and terrorism. In addition, I point you to new Centrerion: Canadian Politics writer Ilya's post on the NEFA Foundation, which has footage of pro-terrorism demonstrations.

This edition,

Stephen Littau at Fearless Philosophy for Free Minds presents 10 Terms and Phrases to be Wary of. A true classic in the literature of media criticism, including an examination of 'activist vs. lobbyist' (you may recall similar criticism of 'militant' in Abbagav's submission from last week) and 'democracy', whose semantic difference with liberalism we've discussed before.

Muse at Shiloh Musings presents Oy Headlines. Muse analyzes a headline to demonstrate how words subtly shape perception. Emotional and simple in style, I liked this no frills, straight to the point post.

Jon Swift at Jon Swift presents Dear Michelle Malkin.... Jon says that he "wanted to call up Michelle Malkin but I couldn't find her telephone number anywhere on her site so I wrote her a letter instead." He's obviously got a sense of humour, too: "I would send you my telephone number, but I'm afraid that there are some debt collectors with whom I've had a slight misunderstanding, and, well, I'm sure you understand." The topic is Malkin's brush with protesters and the press over some writing of hers.

Michael McCullough at Stingray: a blog for salty Christians presents The Natalee Holloway case: is it worth all the attention? It's a dissapearance (murder?) case in Aruba involving a pretty blonde American. While he sympathizes with the girl and her family, Michael asks pertinent questions about why that case is being covered. (Though I feel a bit conflicted about sending traffic to a site aiming to convert people to Christianity... I'm strongly opposed to the practice of actively trying to get people to convert to one's religion, aka proselytism.)

Update: Josh Cohen at Multiple Mentality presents Turned off by turning off. Says Josh: "TV Turn-off Week is big in American schools. This year, they're trying for even more support by running childhood obesity up the flagpole." The post is part common sense reasoning, part rant. Why bother to turn the TV off when the PC's right there, and when you can watch the same things on it too... Amongst other insights.

Lastly, though Sanity didn't submit this herself, I thought you might care to view her latest on Osama and his videotapes (is it just me, or is the man a megalomaniac looking to become some kind of strange pop music video-type icon? Eminem already spoofed him...)
Also, Honest Reporting follows up on last edition's post about FIFA's entry into politics (it's at the bottom; FIFA is the soccer federation that runs the World Cup), and criticizes the Independant's graphics.

Related articles in the categories of , , and :

Media and education people snob technology
Canada's political system - commenters had some editorial corrections on semantics and language
Western Chants and Arab Chants
Dan Pipes advocating racism?

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Pro-Terrorism Demonstrations Caught On Tape in US/UK

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Hi all,
First of all, thank you lecentre for the warm welcome and the compliment. This is my first time blogging, so bear with me...
While browsing old lgf ( ) posts, I stumbled onto an interesting but shaddy website (xfile-like music and all), claiming to be a private counter-terrorism intelligence agency, able to work internationally and free from bureaucratic red tape. Despite this odd description, the people behind the agency (at least the ones that are named) seem to check out - they're both respected investigative journalists and authors, having covered terrorist networks for mainstream media for many years. The site is called 'Nine Eleven / Finding Answers' and can be accessed at
On there, amongst other things, there are two spine-chilling videos of demonstrations that were recently held by Islamic organisations in London and New York.
The London one is here:
The New York one is here:
Makes me wonder about whether there should be limits to freedom of speech... Calling for another 7/7 or a 'mushroom cloud' is considered incitment to violence in my book, and if I were a cop, I'd arrest them for it. Notice also the green army garb...

UPDATE: BBC ( ) is reporting that two people have been arrested, one since released on bail, for illegally organising the London demonstration and for soliciting murder. The NYPD should have reacted in the same way...

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Friday, April 28, 2006

Saint Jean Charest's Educational Reforms

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Sit' au Quebec, Saint Jean Charest y'a crisser une nouvelle reforme de l'education. Tabarnak, ye bon le ti Criss!

Related articles:
Pre-Secondary Education Politics in Quebec
Quebec Separatism - Stephane Dion, Andre Pratte
Minister Audet's budget is a joke
NDP hard at work in Quebec

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Thursday, April 27, 2006

Welcome Ilya and American Moderate

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We have a new member on the team! I'd like you guys to welcome my friend Ilya to the blog. A gentleman and a scholar, as the saying goes, Ilya is a brilliant public speaker, and was in fact our English language valedictorian at high school graduation a few years ago - even though English is not his first language! (Here in Quebec there are English and French valedictorians, and since Ilya and I went to a Jewish day school, there was a Hebrew valedictorian too.)
Ilya's a strong critical thinker, and I'm sure you'll all be able to appreciate his contributions.
On a related note, we've added the American Moderate to the Politics club. He's another critical thinker, and I may be contributing pieces there in the near future as well. I like his tagline, even if it's a bit presumptuous: "speaking for the majority."

Related articles:
Welcome to David the Comedian
New politics club members
Join Us
Blue Grit Joins

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Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Carnival of Finance and Entrepreneurship

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CCP's participating in two business and economics related carnivals.

A (blog) carnival is a post that links to a bunch of other posts on a particular theme. Thus we're being linked to in overall financial and economic contexts. The carnivals are worth a look for those of you enjoying the economics posts.
You can find the Carnival of Finance at MillionDollarGoal
while the carnival of small business is at .

Related articles:
Business Carnival and Christian Carnival
Satire and Comedy Carnivals
Mediocre Media - We Host
Carnival of the Clueless

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Deadly Antisemitism - The Pattern

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Antisemitism, whether Nazi of Islamist, follows a pattern, and is dangerous not only to Jews, but to the West as well...
By Yisrael Ne'eman of Middle East on Target. Reprinted with permission.

As much as many would like to deny it, there is a pattern to radical anti-Semitism and the demand for Jewish extermination.
Foremost, it is a public demand made by those in power who see Jewish destruction as part of policy implementation. At the outset, Jews "simply" suffer a "well deserved" discrimination. Once the antisemites consolidate their power, the Jews are the first to be destroyed.
Whether Nazi or militant totalitarian Islamic, both anti-semites see themselves as divinely anointed to rule the world. The Nazis believed in a "ladder of peoples," where they ruled the hierarchy while the totalitarian Islamists pursue a global conflict to destroy all non-Moslems or subjugate them[, a conflict] known as Dar el Harb or the "domain of war."
Afterwards, other "enemies" such as advocates of democracy, equal rights activists or anyone else who gets in the way will suffer the same fate.

Christian antisemitism, culminating with Nazi Germany and the Holocaust was rooted in 2000 years of hatred. Theological hatred began with accusations of deicide concerning Jesus of Nazareth and moved to the popular demonization of the Jews as the devil incarnate capable of child sacrifice, blood sucking and any multitude of sins. Yet they were still tolerated. Eventually "scientific" thought resulted in Nazi racial theory whose logic demanded the destruction of the Jewish gene pool and thereby the extermination of all Jews. Conversion to Christianity was not an option.

Islamic anti-Semitism is 1400 years old (and let’s not get hung up on semantics – anti-Semitism = Jew hatred – and nothing else). From the outset, Jews were classified as dhimmi, or second class citizens, who were forced to recognize Islam as a superior religion and way of life. Although the accusation of deicide did not exist, Jews were looked down upon for having rejected Mohammed as the prophet or messenger and would "rightfully" pay a heavy price for such haughtiness. Today, militant, totalitarian Islam as represented by Osama bin Laden's Al-Qaeda and Iran's President Ahmedinejad demand the destruction of the state of Israel and the Jewish People.

In both cases the despised Jews were often separated out of general society, placed in ghettoes and made second class citizens or less while being subject to pogroms. Centuries of inbred economic and social discrimination handed down from one generation to the other made Jew hatred a "given".

It is on such fertile ground that Hitler wrote his chapter "Nation and Race" in Mein Kampf where he demanded the liquidation of the Jewish People. After being democratically elected as chancellor, he liquidated German democracy, continued vilifying the Jewish People and implemented the Final Solution. Although Germany and Austria were the pillars of the Nazi nation there was little opposition from Eastern Europeans, who detested the Jews after centuries of institutionalized anti-Semitism. Exterminating Jews was a logical extension of a deep rooted theological, popular and economic Judeophobia.

In Mein Kampf he accuses the Jews of being communists, capitalists, democrats and of setting up organizations like the Free Masons to undermine German society while lauding the viciously anti-Semitic Russian tsarist forgery The Protocols of the Elders of Zion. Both The Protocols and Mein Kampf are best sellers in the Arab/Moslem world today and the above mentioned accusations are prominent in totalitarian Islamic diatribes (see Articles 7, 22 and 32 in the Hamas Covenant). Hitler's first thought was to expel all the Jews but once he invaded Eastern Europe he decided on extermination.

According to the minority status discriminatory dhimma regulations Jews cannot be equal members of a Moslem dominated society. The rise of secular Arab nationalism in the 1950s was to rectify such prejudices but failed as Jews suffered persecution for who they were. Approximately a million Jews were expelled or fled the Arab/Islamic world, most coming to Israel.

But Israel is located in the center of the Middle East and Jewish national equality, or sovereignty, was and is an affront to the Arab world [Ne'eman mean they take it as an insult; not that it is meant to insult]. Nowadays, just Jewish existence is a crime, especially to those totalitarian Islamists of the bin Laden and Ahmedinejad types. This is not a matter of anti-Zionism. Ben Ladin demands the death of all Jews and Ahmedinejad threatens Israel with nuclear extermination. These two are heroes in the Arab/Islamic world.

Hitler was a hero to "ethnic" Germans in Europe but gained allies among the political elite in Hungary, Slovakia, Romania, the Ukraine, Croatia and the Baltic countries. Popular support, especially for murdering (or at least doing away with) Jews was solid in Eastern Europe. Totalitarian Islam rules in Iran, Sudan, for the most part in Saudi Arabia and the Palestinian Authority and threatens regimes in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Egypt, Algeria, Iraq and the rest of the Arab/Moslem world. Jew hatred is a priority even if the Jewish presence does not exist (except for a few thousand in Morocco and in Iran itself).

The World Jihad Movement includes the Iranian ayatollahs, the Moslem Brotherhood, Hamas and all other militant, totalitarian Islamic organizations. Popular support for them is rising as the West tries to negotiate and [eventually] capitulates in a rerun of 1930s policy. On this Holocaust Memorial Day Ahmedinejad once again denied the Holocaust, demanded Israel's destruction and made a pitch to Germany not to take responsibility for "what they did not do" sixty years ago.

Militant, totalitarian Islam is no less threatening to the Jewish People and the West than the Nazis were seventy years ago.

Related articles:

Islamists vs Europe
Appeasin Iran
Hatred of Muslims

Why Palestinians voted in Islamists

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Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Unlinking Al Jazeera, Bloggers Fight Terrorism

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Bloggers can help fight terrorism's influence by managing their link lists

Stewart Bell's book, The Martyr's Oath, reveals that al-Qaeda's main recruitment strategy is to indoctrinate Muslim youth into thinking the West is attacking Muslims worldwide. Al Jazeera is a key player in that propaganda, and deserves to lose the links bloggers have to it, so that they don't help such views get circulation. This will also make Al Jazeera's content less prominent in search engine results.
Here are a few examples of ridiculous content that should get anyone but a hardened al-Qaeda member to remove links on their website to Al Jazeera.

The main issue is really that they promote terrorism and the false message that Islam is under attack from the West.

Related articles:
Mediocre Media
Hezballah is in Government and the Media Hides It
Censoring Catholic Terrorist Ideologues

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Disrupting the Israeli Civil Agenda

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Middle East On Target analyst Yisrael Ne'eman has written an intelligent piece on Israel's coalition negotiations. It is reprinted with permission.

Disrupting the Civil Agenda
By Yisrael Ne'eman

The most pressing issues in Israel today are domestic as evidenced by the March 28 election results. Over one third of the populace did not vote, citing corruption, self-interest and the general feeling that the politicians do not give a damn about them. The pensioners list got an unheard of protest vote of 7 seats, a clear demand that help be on the way to "someone" who is in dire need and in this case it was in the image of one's grandparents.

In coalition building the biggest battles between Acting PM Ehud Olmert and Labor Party leader Amir Peretz are over the finance and education ministries. Previously everyone would kill to get the defense ministry which Peretz has been offered but is very reluctant to accept. The shift to a domestic agenda as initiated by Ariel Sharon after the 2003 elections through state infrastructure development and economic growth initiatives is sinking in.

Olmert’s victory speech revolved around the ideas expressed in his "Consolidation" policy which is just another word for Sharon’s "Disengagement." Olmert is emphasizing the need for a withdrawal from the heavily populated Arab areas of the West Bank and the unilateral determination of Israel's future boundaries in the face of the inability to negotiate with the Hamas or PA President Mahmoud Abbas. The former rejects Israel's right to exist and the latter cannot implement any negotiated accord. The idea is to put the Palestinians on the other side of the fence and get on with nation building. Palestinian issues are to be peripheralized, compartmentalized and "out of sight, out of mind." The thrust is towards national reinvestment in infrastructure, jobs (including raising the minimum wage) and education thereby leading to a stronger economy and a strengthened social cohesion.

Sharon's Disengagement was the beginning of the process and now it is Olmert's Consolidation, even if his potential right wing and religious coalition partners will not allow him to use the term in the future. The army, police, defense and internal security ministries are facing the test of reality as the Palestinians have no intention of cooperating with Israeli unilateralism and the resulting Jewish State development. Their job is to get the Palestinian issue off the front pages of the press and out of the media as much as possible. To succeed they will need to pre-empt Palestinian terror and rocket initiatives otherwise domestic issues will once again take a back seat to foreign policy and defense.

Due to continued Kassam rocket fire at Israeli towns and agricultural villages Israel has fired more than 400 artillery shells into the northern Gaza Strip launch zones just during the past day. In the last week several Palestinian terrorists were killed alongside civilian casualties as rockets were fired from residential areas (or close by) and Israeli artillery responded. Fueling the flames and making matters worse is the non-border between Gaza and Egypt. Weapons and terrorists flow freely as Egypt is once again an accomplice to Palestinian terror. Gaza anarchy is as bad, if not worse now that the Hamas is in control. Although their own operatives exercise restraint, the Fatah Al-Aksa Brigades and the Islamic Jihad are initiating the attacks in a challenge to PM Ismail Haniya's government.

The security forces need to contain the Palestinian violence to enable the declared domestic agenda to finally take root. If not, we can envision a return to 2000-04 when terrorism and Palestinian issues of all types dominated everyday Israeli thinking, behavior and the national agenda. Olmert and Peretz (and Leiberman?) beware.

Related articles:
Israel moves to the Center
Media Bias on Israel
What is Important When Considerin Action

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Monday, April 24, 2006

Montreal Habs up 3-0 After One Period - Update: Habs Win in Double OT

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Go Habs Go! The Montreal Canadiens are in a controlling lead 3-0 over the Carolina HarriedCanes. Goalie Martin Gerber was pulled from the net after the third goal, which was a shot from the point that appeared to deflect in the slot. I believe Garth Murray was credited for the goal. Ryder scored the second one, and I missed the first.

The Habs are keeping the pressure on the Canes, and the puck stayed in the Carolina zone for long stretches. On the other hand, this may have tired out the Habs just as much as it tired out the Canes, because the Habs didn't always have three-four men at their blue line to meet the Hurricane attacks.

Anyways... any optimists like me calling Habs in four?

UPDATE: The Canes took the lead 4-3, we tied then took back the lead 5-4, on goals from Kovalev and Zednik. A minute 30 left to go, the HarriedCanes have 6 men (the goalie's been pulled), face-off in the Canadiens zone. Cane wins the faceoff, there's traffic and Huet doesn't see the puck moving cross-ice, so the one-timer surprises him glove-side. 5-5.

UPDATE: Well, they made it hard on themselves by letting the HarriedCanes climb back into the game, but the Habs finally did it. In the second period of overtime, on a developing rush, a fast pass from behind the net sees the puck end up on Michael Ryder's stick: 6-5! Habs win in double OT! :D

In hindsight, it might have been lots simpler if Martin Gerber had stuck around for longer.

Related articles:
Habs take first game 6-1!
Western Hockey Chants and Middle-Eastern Political Chants
CBC's hockey politics

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NDP cares about Quebec - Quip

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Nicolas Thibodeau and the NDP just put out a press release, and are emailing people to garner support for the NDP. Their communications are shrewd: by their butchery of the English language in the press release, coupled with their 'anglicismes' in the French email, Thibodeau and the NDP demonstrate a deep understanding of Quebec's car-wreck language situation.

Related articles:

Liberal and NDP bloggers battle
Interview with Nicolas Thibodeau
I thought the NDP ignores Quebec?

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NDP Active in Quebec, says Thibodeau

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A few days back I was musing about whether the NDP even realized Quebec was part of Canada. It appears the country's socialist party does indeed realize, and is working to spread the word that the NDP cares about Quebec. The following is a press release from Nicolas Thibodeau, the NDP's defeated candidate in the riding of Mount Royal, and the NDP. It is followed by a letter from Thibodeau concerning the NDP's upcoming National Convention, which will be held here in Quebec, and NDP politics in general. The press release is directly translated from the French, it appears, which would explain the English mistakes.

Against Hiking Age of Consent

Last week-end [April 16; this is slightly old] the General Council of the NDP Quebec Section was held at UQTR. Nicolas R. Thibodeau, candidate in the last federal elections and president of the Mount Royal NDP Association met with Jack Layton and M. Pierre Ducasse, the representant [sic] of the NDP for Quebec.

Mr. Thibodeau took time to adress the delicate issues of age of consentent [sic] and of the present canadian [sic] military policies regarding our participation in NORAD. Furthermore, the Mount Royal delegation took a strong stand to push sustainable environmental measures for all future NDP events. It is Mr. Thibodeau's stand that democracy and surrounding activities should be practiced in a responsible way in every possible way. The youth representant [sic] of the NDP in Mount Royal, Christel Marchand, took part in many discussion [sic] surrounding the youth preoccupations in environment and education.

In the next several months, Nicolas R. Thibodeau will be revisiting [sic] Mount Royal schools and youth organization to actively do what politicians should do : listen. He will seek the answers relatively [sic] to the absentees of the last elections, the environmental responsability [sic] of Canada and in regards to the Conservative measures to hike the age of consent. Hence [sic], he will try to get the citizen's feedback on how to change the present trend of low participation at [in] the election in Canada...
Personal letter from Thibodeau to people who showed interest in the NDP last election follows. Note, it's not 'support', it's 'soutien'. Support is an anglicisme...

Bonjour à tous! Hi to all! (please see English translation below)

Le printemps est là et c'est le temps des semences!
L'association Mont-Royal du NPD a besoin de votre énergie, de vos idées et de votre support...
Le prochain Congrès National aura lieu à Québec en septembre prochain, afin d'obtenir le plus de délégué(e)s possibles nous sommes en période de recrutement et de renouvellement. Alors, prière de visiter le lien suivant et de le recommander à vos amis, la meilleure façon de changer les choses c'est de s'impliquer! Considérant le fort taux d'absentation à Mont-Royal, la prochaine fois pourrait être la bonne!
Nicolas R. Thibodeau
p.s. nous avons jusqu'au 11 mai pour recueillir le maximum de support pour se faire entendre au prochain Congrès!!!

Spring is here and it's time to plow!
The Mount Royal NDP association needs your energy, your ideas and your support...
Next september in Quebec City will be held the Federal Convention of the NDP. In order to make your voice heard it is essential to help your association grow, the more we are, the more we can be! Invite a friend! Considering the strong absentee participation of the last election, next time it's might be our turn! Please click on the following link to renew or join us :
Nicolas R. Thibodeau
p.s. We have until the May 11th to obtain the maximum support for the next NDP Convention!!!
Président de l'Association NPD Mont-Royal et ex-Candidat du NPD dans Mont-Royal
President of the NDP Mount Royal Association & your NDP ex-candidate in Mount Royal

Association de comté
Association NPD Mont-Royal - A/S NPD Québec
4384, boul. St-Laurent, bureau 100, Montréal (Qc) H2W 1Z5
Tél : (514) 590-0036 ou 1-800-843-8598
Téléc. : (514) 590-0555

Related articles on the NDP and Nicolas Thibodeau :
Does the NDP care about Quebec
Interview with Nicolas Thibodeau
The Canadian Federal Political System
NDP candidate's zany conspiracy theory about the CIA

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Sunday, April 23, 2006

Dear Readers

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Dear Readers, we'd like you to give us a hand

Blue Grit, Andrew, Jiggy and myself write articles and posts to inform, entertain, and otherwise interest you (okay, we also rant now and again). That said, we'd like to ask you to help Centrerion: Canadian Politics, and we're not even looking for donations. I made a short list of a some easy actions you could take that would make our day:
Guided Tour: Privacy Policy (Previous) - User Guide (Next) | About | Reader Rewards | Join | Carnivals | Newsletter | Contact
Get a account (they're free), and bookmark our homepage, and the posts you like. Here's an explanation and how-to guide for Can you spare a minute?

Check out our Help Wanted post
, and see if you can help us with any of those things. We're looking for web design help, and more critical thinkers to write more content.

Comment. Comment on a post, email us or send us a link.

You can get our new content by email, or by RSS.

Email us ideas.
We share ours with you, let us know what you think we could write about to share your ideas with other readers. We'll be happy to link to your site (if any) or to a charity or association you're involved with as thanks, and maybe even do a piece on them.

If you're also a supporter of Israel, join the Friends of Israel group, and put the sign on your website.

Now that you're done reading our letter to you, consider doing one or a few of the things named above. Alternatively, here are some related articles you might find interesting, notably our Reader Rewards/Loyalty program, and our Help Wanted Post.
Related articles: explained and Digg exposed
Centrerion's Global Readership - Look where you've helped us get! :)
Help Wanted
Reader Rewards Program
Are terrorists reading too? I was pretty scared the other day when I read my site statistics and logs...

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Une Clac: Habs Win 6-1 Over HarriedCanes !

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The Montreal Canadiens (the Habs) won 6-1 over the Carolina Hurricanes, who looked like Harried Canes on this night. I could only watch the 3rd period, but here's what I saw:
  1. Three men were almost always back at the Habs' blue line, when Carolina had the puck. The only exceptions were when it was actually 4 men at the blue line, or when, on a bad pass across the point, a Carolina player got somewhat of a breakaway (the Habs player was a foot or two behind him n using his stick to harass him).

  2. The Habs forecheck was constant, and harried the Canes constantly. I even saw all-star Oleg Tverdovsky lose the puck in his skates as the result of a particularly energetic Montreal forecheck.

  3. Most of the action was in the HarriedCanes zone. It was absolute beauty to see the Habs dominating the Canes in 5 on 5 play. During one of these stints, Russian Alexei Kovalev, the Habs' most talented forward, deked a HarriedCane with a move that made him look like a statue, and then got off a rapid shot: top-corner dominance!

  4. Sheldon Sourary trashed HarriedCane goalie Martin Gerber with another top-corner goal, this one coming from Souray's blistering slap shot. I felt bad for the top-right netting by that point. Other scorers for the Habs were Stephane Bouillon, Radek Bonk, an earlier one from Kovalev, and youth Chris Higgins, whose constant improvements are probably the sidestory of the year for the Habs (the main story being Cristobal Huet's season-rescuing goaltending).

On a related note, I got to see the Habs on CBC. Finally! (I'll bet it was their most-watched Hockey Night in Canada of the year.)

Related Habs, hockey, and Montreal articles:
Politics of Hockey: CBC should play the Habs during the season
Western Chants vs Arab Chants: 'Go Habs Go' vs 'Sader yada yada I'm getting outa breath here'
Montreal Expos still sucking as the Nationals

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Friday, April 21, 2006

Technophobia: Luddites in the Media and Education

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I have to rant against the mainstream media and education establishment. Most of the people in these institutions are luddites (those who don't adapt to technology) and anti-technology snobs. In their opinion, only what academics and 'experts' say and write can possible be valid.

Well listen here, you technophobes,

Wikipedia is an acceptable source, so long as the article has been reviewed. Granted, political propaganda might slip in, but Britannica and co.'s editors also have their own views which likely affect their publication, though I grant you it may not be as evident as on Wikipedia (though you could argue that makes it insidious). And here is the rest of it.

Bloggers can have relevant insight, and are often better informed than your own so-called 'experts,' who really just amount, more often than not, to retired talking heads.

Websites are valid resources, even if you've never heard of the author before, and the author isn't some recognized scholar. Entirely web-based bibliographies and works cited pages can be valid, and will often in fact show a more targeted, relevant research. This is because the relevancy of search results returned by Google's algorithms is exponentially greater than the relevancy of anything you'll find in a regular library. Even if there is no editing process for most websites, the democratic nature of the internet means that websites with crappy content won't turn up at the top of search results, because no one will link to them.


Bloody technophobes...

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Mediocre Media 1
Explaining Social Bookmarking Technology: Delicious and Digg
Education Politics in Quebec
Rant In Response to Comments On Separatism

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NAFTA's Impact on Canadian GDP and Wages: Research Commentary

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Here is the next part in my analysis of NAFTA's impact on Canadians. If this is your first time reading, you might be interested in looking at the research findings summaries I wrote earlier. In this case, NAFTA's effects on Canadian GDP and NAFTA's impact on Canadian wages and remuneration would be of interest. That said, here's my analysis and commentary offering an explanation of the findings.

There is little to say about the growth of the GDP, if only to contrast it to the growth (or lack thereof, depending on one’s source) of Canadians' incomes. GDP has grown by an average of 3% since the implementation of NAFTA, yet incomes have only grown by an average 1% annually, if we accept the OECD's assumption that all of a business' costs with regards towards its workers should be considered as remuneration. It should be noted, therefore, that most of the new economic wealth, which is accumulating faster since NAFTA, is not benefiting Canadians. If it were, their average salaries would be growing at the same pace as GDP, i.e. 3% annually. Rather, businesses operating in Canada, and the Canadian government, are seeing the rewards of such growth (which partly explains the government's surpluses, as well as increased NSR). This is the optimistic scenario: one third (1%/3%) of new wealth is going to Canadians.

That scenario is dependent on accepting the OECD's assumption, however. The difficulty with the OECD's assumption that all costs per employee are remunerative is that firms might tabulate into such "remuneration" other costs, such as stationary, electricity and other miscellaneous costs that do not pay employees. Motivation for this over-accounting of costs could easily be found in tax laws, where tax breaks would be tied to costs of employment. Furthermore, even if we accept that the accounting was honest, the 1% annual increase is an average. While the 1% could mean everyone getting 1% more a year, it might also mean that top executives are getting a larger share of the payroll. In short, the information on average incomes out there is inconclusive; both of the principal current methods of accounting being severely limited. Both the OECD's findings and the VIF's findings should be taken with a grain of salt (perhaps a pound of salt would be better?) when it comes to average incomes.

Related articles:
Remuneration and Wages in Canada since NAFTA
Canadian Unemployment since NAFTA
Canadian Savings Rates since NAFTA
Canada's GDP and GDP per capita since NAFTA

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Father Richard John Neuhaus or America's Catholic Terrorist Ideologue

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The New Republic (TNR), probably the most insightful, critical, and intelligent politics and current affairs magazine in the US (which gives it an incredibly high standing with members of Congress, incidentally), recently had a devastating cover piece exposing Father Richard John Neuhaus, written by a former editor at Neuhaus' magazine, no less. Neuhaus, a former Lutheran pastor, converted to Catholicism so that he could 'obey a higher authority' (and for a sense of belonging, if you read between the lines of the TNR article) and essentially for others to do his thinking for him. Neuhaus, or Father Richard as President Bush calls him, actively opposes critical thinking, and suggests eveeryone should be taking their direction unquestioningly from the Church. But Neuhaus doesn't merely advocate letting your brain dry out and rattle in your skull as others tell you what to do and think. No, he's far more sinister than that.

As TNR reports, Father Neuhaus, as far back a his earliest publications in the 60s and 70s, said pious Catholics would be justified in carrying out a violent uprising against today's society. Why? Well, says the terrorist Catholic ideologue, Catholicism is under attack from our amoral, satanic, lewd society, and a Catholic fomented civil war is key (though thankfully not the only way, he advocates, to be fair) to reclaim morality. In addition, non-Catholics, including even other Christians are second-class citizens, as they lack the 'true' moral compass. Atheists and agnostics are particularly targeted. If this doesn't sound familiar and you have an interest in Islamic terrorism, it should.

Consider Stewart Bell's groundbreaking book, The Martyr's Oath, about how a Canadian-Kuwaiti kid got recruited into al-Qaeeda. One of the key revelations of the book - which I highly recommend everyone reads, and a review of which I hope to write soon - is al-Qaeda's recruiting strategy: brainwash young Muslims into believing that Islam is under attack (hence the references to the Crusaders), and that only violent resistance will protect the Mohammedan faith (if only Osama and Neuhaus could meet in a boxing ring and violently resist for as long as one could still stand up).

Father Richard
John Neuhaus is a huge threat to America, and to any country where his terrorist rantings are heard. As I've written repeatedly, freedom of speech is not unlimited, Neuhaus is a prime example of abusive free speech. Not only should he be kicked out of the White House's halls of power, but out of his publication, and from any tribune where he could possible reach the mainstream. Religious and political activism is one thing; advocating for brainwashing and terrorism is quite another.

Related articles:
Adoption and the Church
Disregarding raving lunatics
Hamas' Ideology

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Tuesday, April 18, 2006

The Canadian Political System

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The Canadian political system's history, components, and methods of legislating

Dave Lympany originally wrote this. I edited this for accuracy (it was a bit out of date), grammar and clarity, besides adding some points to make it more complete.

History and Role of the Canadian Government

The Canadian political system was created by the Fathers of Confederation at the Quebec conference of 1864. This then became law when the Constitution Act was passed in 1867. This act gave formal executive authority to Queen Victoria (Queen of Great Britain) which made Canada a sovereign democracy. The Canadian political system is therefore loosely based on the British system.

In creating the Canadian political system, the Fathers of Confederation gave Canada's federal government the power to "make laws for the peace, order and good government of Canada."

Today, Canada is an independent Federal state with the Queen of England still being the head of state. However, as it is the Canadian Parliament's House of Commons and Senate which write legislation (the Queen is also part of Parliament), Her Majesty's powers are extremely limited; all the Queen does nowadays is give the "Royal Assent" as a formal recognition that a new law has been passed.
The Governor General of Canada is the Queen's representative in Canada and carries out all the Royal obligations when the Queen is not in Canada (and she usually carries them out even when Her Majesty visits). The Governor is always a Canadian (in practice, though not in law) chosen by the Queen on the advice of Canada's Prime Minister. The length of office is normally five years for the Governor General, who resides in Ottawa. Ottawa is also home to the Houses of Parliament (where the MPs and Senators, i.e. the federal government, creates laws) are located, making Ottawa Canada's capital city.

There are 4 powers in the Canadian political system. First, there is the Queen of England, who is Canada's titular Head of State, a hereditary title in the British Royal Family. The Prime Minister is the leader of the party elected into power, and he is Canada's de facto head of state (update: in the popular sense of the term; he is technically the 'head of government'... see the comments below for more). The Senate, which is the upper house of the legislature, is appointed by the Queen/Governor General on the Prime Minister's recommendations. Finally, there is the lower house of the legislature, the popularly elected House of Commons.

The Senate

The Senate is made up of 105 Senators who are appointed by the Governor General on the recommendation of the Prime Minister. Each Province or Territory has a set number of Senators - 24 each from the Maritimes, Quebec and Ontario, 6 each from Alberta, BC, Manitoba and Saskatchewan, 6 from Newfoundland and Labrador and a further 1 each from the three Territories. To serve on the Senate, one has to be a Canadian citizen, over age 30, own $4,000 of equity in land in their home Province, have over $4,000 as personal net worth and live in the province represented. Senators can serve until age 75.

The main role of the Senate is to read over and examine the bills (laws) sent from the House of Commons. The Senate can also initiate bills. In practice, though, the Senate rarely initiates legislation, and equally rarely will the Senate reject a bill (which results in the bill being sent back to the House of Commons for amendment).

The House of Commons

The real power in Canadian politics is held by the House of Commons. The members of Parliament (MPs) are elected by the general public during a federal election, for a term of 5 years, during which they sit in the House of Commons.

-Electing the House of Commons and the Prime Minister

The country is split up into ridings, or constituencies (currently totaling 308), by population size, and candidates run for election in each riding. Whichever candidate in a particular riding who is given the most votes in the federal election wins the right to represent that constituency in Parliament. This is known as "winning the seat," because each riding's representative has a seat in Parliament. This is also the reason for references to 'sitting MPs': the allusion is to the Canadian population's current representatives.

Most candidates represent a particular political party and the party with the most "seats" takes over as the Government. The main parties in Canada are the Liberal Party of Canada, currently lead by Bill Graham, the ruling (as of this writing) Conservative Party of Canada, lead by Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Jack Layton's New Democratic Party (NDP), Gilles Duceppe's Bloc Quebecois and Jim Harris' Green Party.

The leader of the political party that wins the election becomes the Prime Minister of Canada, which is why Stephen Harper of the Conservatives is Prime Minister. The Prime Minister effectively runs the day-to-day affairs of the country with the support and advice of his Cabinet. The Cabinet is made up of "Ministers" chosen by the Prime Minister to be responsible for certain fields of competency in the government. For example, there are ministers of Health, Finance, Defence and Immigration, to name only a few. These areas of responsibility are called "portfolios" and each minister will have a large team of people, known as civil servants, working for him/her. Only the ministers and their top aides change during an election - not the civil servants.

A government with an absolute majority of seats (i.e. 155+ of the 308 elected MPs) in the House will be self-reliant, enabling it to pass most of the laws it wants. Conversely, a minority government (one which has more seats than any other party, but fewer seats than all the other parties combined) has to rely on the support of the other parties to pass its laws.

-After the election

The MPs' main duties in representing their constituencies are writing and debating laws. In addition, depending on their party, MPs will either generally support or oppose the government. The official Opposition (currently the Liberals) is the political party with the second most seats in the House. Their principal job is to hold the government accountable for their decisions.

After each election, the Senate and the House of Commons either elect (House) or appoint (Senate) a Speaker. The Speaker is in charge of proceedings and has to be impartial in his enforcing the rules of the House/Senate during debates and votes. The Speaker presides over the House from a raised chair with the government MPs to his right and the opposition to his left.

Making the Laws

To start with, the House of Commons members introduce a "Bill" (legislative proposal). The details of the Bill are read in the House without debate and then the Bill is printed (the first reading).

During the second reading the principles of the Bill are debated followed by a vote. If successful, the Bill is then sent to the Committee stage.

A committee will listen to testimony, examine the Bill and then submits a report to the House recommending it as it is, with amendments or scrapped. From here it goes to the report stage. In the report phase, any amendments are debated and voted on. Then it will pass to the third reading. This is where the House finally debates and votes on the final draft - if it passes the vote it is sent to the Senate.

The Senate puts the Bill through the same process as the House. If the proposed legislation makes it through all that, which it normally does, it is given 'Royal Assent' (see History, above) and becomes Canadian Law.

The author immigrated to Canada in 2003 and has constructed a free information website about Canadian Immigration and life in Canada based on his family's experiences. he also has a page on the Canadian political system.

Article Source:

Related articles:
Canadian government confused about NAFTA?
How to have more government services at less cost
Deafeated NDP candidate Nicolas Thibodeau on the 38th (2006) Parliament's priorities
Islam's failure as an economic system

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The Real Palestinian Terrorist Threat

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The Real Terrorist Threat

by Elliot Chodoff, from Middle east think tank Middle East on Target. Reprinted with permission.

Yesterday’s terrorist attack in Tel Aviv that killed 9 underscores a number of issues, many of which have been wrongly emphasized in the media in recent months.
The Tel Aviv attack was the first successful attack by the terrorist organizations in the past few weeks. This period has been labeled “relatively quiet,” implying that the terrorist organizations have reduced their attempts to launch attacks against Israel. The myth has been taken to the extreme with the assertion that Hamas has moderated its positions as a result of its entry into Palestinian politics, a sign that it is becoming a responsible political organization ready to take on the task of leading the Palestinians after its election victory.

The facts are somewhat at odds with the media myths. Terrorists’ attempts to attack Israel are ongoing and are being prevented by the effective intervention of the IDF and other Israeli security organizations. Occasionally however, the terrorists will succeed, as they did yesterday. While it is true that Hamas has not succeeded in launching a suicide attack in over a year, this is because the IDF has intercepted or disrupted them, and not for lack of trying. This is hardly a reason for optimism concerning Hamas’ moderation, past, present or future.

The Kassam rockets that the terrorists have been firing from Gaza are potentially dangerous weapons, but they do not constitute the real threat that needs to be directly and immediately confronted by the IDF. This is not to say that the Kassam firings do not constitute acts of aggression that should be dealt with as part of the overall war with the terrorists (and we utterly reject the characterization of the Kassams as “homemade” as if that somehow renders them harmless), but rather that the IDF is correct in dedicating its manpower and resources to stopping suicide bombers and other types of more lethal terrorism. More innocent people were killed in yesterday’s attack than by all the Kassam rockets fired in the past three years.

There should be no further doubt that Hamas is a terrorist organization (we haven’t ever doubted it, but apparently some people need more convincing). The victory in the PA elections did nothing to soften the organization’s stance on the need to destroy Israel or the method by which to accomplish the task, as yesterday’s support for the attack by the PA spokesperson illustrated. In fact, there was no reason for Hamas to change its positions: it ran for office as a radical Islamic terrorist organization, and that is why the people voted for it.

Abu Mazen’s condemnation of the attack notwithstanding, Fatah is as much a terrorist organization as Hamas. Both Islamic Jihad and El Aksa Martyrs Brigade (a Fatah subsidiary) took responsibility for the attack. While it is likely that Islamic Jihad was behind it, Fatah has been trying desperately to launch a successful attack since the Hamas election victory. Taking credit for someone else’s success is the next best thing, but this does not mean that Fatah will now become a pacifist organization. Once again, the Hamas victory has improved the electoral chances of the more active and successful terrorist organizations.

The suicide terrorist was 16 years old, despite the fact that the terrorists (and the NY Times) added five years to his age. Evidently even the Jihadists understand that it will be difficult to accuse Israel of killing Palestinian children when the terrorist organizations are the primary killers of Palestinian children. Of course, this fact will not prevent Amnesty International for listing the terrorist as a child victim of the conflict, and hold Israel accountable. If Hamas can get away with it, so can Amnesty.

It is high time that the Israeli leadership realizes that Israel is at war with the PA and it should behave accordingly. There should be no direct response or retaliation for yesterday’s attack. Instead of ordering meaningless retaliatory strikes, which waste ammunition and convince the terrorists that the IDF is impotent, the Israeli government needs to declare that the PA is a terrorist entity dedicated to the destruction of the Jewish State. The appropriate action under the circumstances is to fight the war in a fashion that indicates that Israel is serious about both fighting it and winning it, by use of all means at Israel’s disposal, military, economic and diplomatic. IDF raids were both effective and appropriate before Hamas came to power, but the situation has since deteriorated; Israeli policy needs to be adjusted as well. beginning of my post. And here is the rest of it.

Related articles from Middle East-on Target:
Amona Investigation Farce
Moderate Analysis of Hamas
Israelis Move to the Center
Initial Effects of Hamas' election

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The Left's Dogma: Holy Inquisition Against Conservatives

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The New Left appears to be protecting its dogmas with a Holy Inquisition against Conservatives, in an ironic reversal of McCarthyism.
Conservative Dr Sanity wrote (click title), in her excellent three part series on critical thinking and the Left's denial that other views than theirs might be accurate:
"The last thing a person in denial wants is the free flow of information about a topic that threatens the perfection and contentment of his denial."
The context was that the (Noam Chomsky-led New-) Left is dogmatically attacking Conservatives in an attempt to prevent any dissemination of right-wing views. Notable examples can be seen in the preventing of Conservatives getting tenure at Ivy-League Schools, a Palestinian mob preventing Bibi Netanyahu speaking at a Montreal university, or in Doc Sanity's example, Amazon reviewers panning Conservative books.

It reminds me
of what I recently learnt about in my course on the Renaissance. Galileo Galilei was interrogated and ruined by the Catholic Church's Holy Inquisition for challenging its view that the world is round. They were in denial, and wanted to prevent his theory getting out, because if it did, people might question the Church in other areas too. It seems like the New Left is afraid of right-wingers disseminating their views. Personally, I think it's a ridiculous attempt at censorship. Prove your point with logical arguments, don't censor the other side (unless, their arguments go beyond the limits of freedom of speech, such as advocating murder)

Now, I don't entirely agree with Sanity, or with the right, but they're spot on with this one.

Related articles:
In favour of Critical Thinking in the Muslim World
The limit of free speech
China, MSN and Google partner to censor
Moderate Political Roundup

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Does the NDP care about Quebec?

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Does the NDP care about Quebec? They didn't make much of an effort last election, and I don't think Jacko bothered coming here more than a handful of times...
Just a thought.

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Monday, April 17, 2006

Mediocre Media 1

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Hello, and welcome to the first edition of Mediocre Media, the blogging carnival that exposes the (usually mainstream) media's countless faults, errors, biases, hidden agendas, and acts as a critical watchdog. I invite you to read the submission criteria and then suggest an article for a future edition of Mediocre Media. Hopefully this carnival will grow and come to be a major force to be reckoned with. I need to give special thanks to Ann "Dr Sanity" Santy and Gavriel "AbbaGav" Raanan for their great help in publicizing this, when it was still just a concept. Thanks to all our contributors!

For simplicity, we refer to the mainstream media as MSM.

Click 'read full post' below to see the whole article.

Joerg at Atlantic Review presents Why is Abu Ghraib a cover story again, but not Darfur? Damn good question, and a top quality post. For those who don't know, Darfur is a province of Sudan where a genocide is currently going on against blacks. I've heard the argument that the genocide is old news, but then the Israeli-Arab conflict is too, and the media loves to cover that...

AbbaGav at AbbaGav presents Militants of the Kadima Party. As if it weren't bad enough that terrorists are whitewashed as 'militants,' now the damn MSM is calling the legitimate centrists of Kadima 'militants' too, effectively equating them to the likes of Hamas.

My dad at Mindware Educational Seminars (that's a link to his travel and attend a dental conference' business) tipped me off to a new Honest Reporting Canada report on the Associated Press' mediocrity in covering FIFA's anti-Israel polemic. The irony is that Sepp Blatter, FIFA's head schmendrick, said FIFA couldn't make political statements, that it should stay within the realm of sport. Tom Gross was important in getting this story out.

Jon Swift at Jon Swift presents Jill Carroll vs. the Blogosphere. Jon looks at the blogosphere's cautious stance in comparison to the MSM's glee.

Muse at shiloh musings presents Why the Whitewash of Dubai. Surprisingly, it's an Israeli magazine writing lovely things about the great 'freedoms' in the UAE city of Dubai. I was recently reading a travel magazine about it, and they similarly whitewash the place. Crazy media. I'm just happy the ports deal was canned.

Josh Cohen at Multiple Mentality presents Breaking it down, about the illegal immigration debate in the US. He argues they are breaking the law, and the media ignores this. Of interest primarily to US readers, as I understand it.

Barak at IRIS Blog presents Hamas: Jews Behind US Christianity, Danish Cartoons & 9/11. More moonbat musings exposed, with Barak's expose on the MSM towards the end of the post.
His sarcasm is also kind of funny, in a gallows humour type of way:
"Israel is much more powerful than even Hamas suspects. How difficult was it for the Mossad to sucker 19 people into pulling off 9/11, or twelve Danes to draw cartoons critical of Islamists? The impressive feat was getting millions of Muslims to celebrate the one and riot over the over [sic] ."

Articles on the Mediocre Media, Israel:
Censoring Libellous Moonbats or Why Freedom has Limits
Israeli Election Move Israel to the Center (and voter apathy)
Hezballah is in the Lebanese Government; Who Knew?
Partnering with Media Lies

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NAFTA - Canadian Remuneration and Wages Since NAFTA

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NAFTA's impact on Canadians is a subject of interest here, as you can tell, so here's my summary of the data on how Canadians are being paid since NAFTA's implementation. (Click the read full post link at the bottom to see the whole analysis.)

Workers’ remuneration can be measured in several ways. Yearly salary can be the standard of measurement, hourly wages can be measured, and to complicate matters even further, benefits such as health insurance and retirement pension contributions can be included. For this reason, there are differing opinions on what has taken place in terms of Average Income. Continuing to explain the material in the OECD’s 78th Economic Outlook, one will find a measurement that accounts for all the costs (i.e. including pension contributions and the like) incurred by businesses to employing their workers.

The OECD’s numbers on remuneration show a yearly increase averaging 1%. However, the Vanier Institute of the Family (VIF) recently published findings demonstrating that average wage per hour, for those Canadians paid according to such arrangements, had increased by a mere dime, since 2005. Different sectors of the economy naturally varied from this trend, but overall a dime/hour was the average raise. Multiplied by the average Canadian workweek of approximately 30 hours, the extra dime means 150$ more on a yearly basis. This does not include people working on contracts, or getting annual salaries independent of their hours worked, nor people working from home, and so is substantially limited.

Related articles:
Canadian Unemployment since NAFTA
Savings rates in Canada since NAFTA
GDP and GDP per Capita since NAFTA
Canadian government muddled on NAFTA? 4

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Hezballah is In the Lebanese Government

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I recently learnt that Hezballah has 15/120 seats in the Lebanese parliament, and is apparently quite a force to be reckoned with in Lebanese politics. Why don't the mainstream media tell us these things??

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Sunday, April 16, 2006

Business and Christian Carnivals

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Thanks to Business Opportunities Blog, Financial Revolution, This Blog is Crap and the Cadmusings blog for hosting carnivals and generously including links to Centrerion: Canadian Politics. Respectively, they recently hosted the Carnival of the Capitalists, the Carnival of Investing, the Carnival of the Vanities, and the Christian Carnival.

They linked to Allah Economics, about Islam's failure as an economic system; Freedom's Limits and Their Importance, mainly discussing censorship and when it can be valid; and Freedoms Biblical and Western Legal, about different conceptions of freedom.

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Western Chants and Arab Chants - Go Habs Go vs Sader Yada Yada Yada

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I was at a shisha bar with friends yesterday, and an arab movie was playing. At one point, this mob starts chanting something like 'Sader is an honest man; Sader can not be bought for money' and it just had me thinking, 'you know, it's just not 'Go Habs Go'.
My reaction was, more or less, that it would have been so simple to just chant, like nosebleed-seats Habs fans, 'Saaa-der' 'Saaaaa-der'. Then I wondered if it's maybe the Habs fans who are getting it wrong...
Next game, I say we chant 'The Montreal Canadiens are the best team; their plus minus differential can not be equalled...'

Articles on hockey, Montreal, or the arab world:
Politics of Hockey (put the Habs on CBC!)
Bilingualism in Montreal
Montreal Expos still such
Disregarding Stupid Arguments From the Arab World
Arabs Need Not Be Insulted - Response to Daniel Pipes

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NAFTA - Analysis of Unemployment since NAFTA

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My "NAFTA's Effects on Canadians" series continues with a look at the figures/data/statistics on unemployment since NAFTA.
The Unemployment Rate is a measure of joblessness amongst the population willing, able, and actively searching for work (unemployed in the labour force divided by the total labour force). These three criteria – willingness, ability, and desire – are essential to the determination of the labour force. Thus it is obvious that the Unemployment Rate is inextricably linked to Labour Productivity, which measures the effectiveness of our labour resources in producing goods and services.
The statistics here are complex and apparently contradictory. Since the implementation of NAFTA, unemployment has decreased over a majority of years, including 1994, and ending 2005 at 6.6%, another positive decrease. In 1992 and 1993, the data remained stable at just over 11%. On the other hand, the data on Labour Productivity is in a continual state of flux, following no noticeable long-term trends. Thus in 1994, Labour Productivity was relatively high at a rating of 3.0. In the next two years it dropped a total of 2.5 points, before rebounding to a 2.0. Rating. The remainder of the term since NAFTA’s implementation shows similar data.

Previous articles on the impact of NAFTA:
Canadian national and Canadian Household Savings Rates
Canada's GDP and GDP per Capita
Impact of NAFTA: Introduction to the Research
What NAFTA means for CAFTA

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Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Passover Holidays

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My writing for the next week or so will be sporadic; it's the Jewish holiday of Passover, or Pesach. During part of this time (4 of Passover's 8 days), Jews are prohibited from working, which includes using a computer. I'll see you guys soon, and when I come back, priority posts will be a big feature on the Canadian political system I'm working on, and more of my analysis on NAFTA. To those of you celebrating Easter, happy holidays, to my fellow Jews, ditto: Chag Sameach. To everyone, have a good long weekend!

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Monday, April 10, 2006

Acme Death to 2nd Greatest Satan Signs

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I was browsing around the Politics, Web and Humour Club websites. Good ol' Potfry has some humorous reports on the ACME "Signs of Death" department. Like commenter "The Oracle" put it, the Sheik has no clothes and no vocabulary. Click the title to see the post.

Related articles on humour and foreign affairs:
Satire and Comedy at Mark and Tony's
Osama and Coffee
West Bank Protest Delay by Search for Danish Flag to Burn - by Potfry

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Sunday, April 09, 2006

Carnivals We Host

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A carnival is a post linking to a variety of different writers's articles and ideas on a particular theme. These are the two blogging carnivals we host, here at Centrerion Canadian Politics:
- The Moderate Circus
- Mediocre Media
Please note we will be hosting the June 21 edition of the The Tangled Bank science carnival
Guided Tour: Join the Team (Previous) - Newsletter(Next) |
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As you can see, we link to people tackling issues relevant to Canadian politics from a moderate perspective (or discussing centrism in general), and to people criticizing the media, with particular blood and vinegar aimed at the mainstream media. Naturally, xenophobes need not submit their articles for inclusion in the Moderate Circus or Mediocre Media.

Moderate Circus

Submissions should discuss an issue from a moderate perspective, or discuss centrism itself. For example, one could submit a post arguing for a medium-sized government that doesn't interfere too much, but that still has a wide enough safety net to catch anyone with a serious problem. Partisan submissions are accepted.

Mediocre Media

Posts to this carnival can discuss any media in the world. The posts should include topics such as media bias, poor reporting, ignorance, and all the "you goofed" type of stuff the editors of "letters to the editor" don't print. Other criticism of the media is welcome. The full political spectrum can submit their posts. Related posts are accepted; use your judgement.

To be included in the next carnival, either email me, use Conservative Cat's Carnival submission tool, or use Blog Carnival's service. Please include a permalink/link to the specific post, a trackback url if any, and a brief synopsis of your post (-50 words).

Related articles:
Mediocre Media 2
Mediocre Media 1
Moderate Cicus II
Moderate Circus III
CTV's weak news coverage
CTV is consistent (consistently bad, that is)

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