Monday, April 30, 2007

CBC - Cheating & Bluffing Corporation.

CBC goofs are frequent. Last one I noticed was just a month ago during the Quebec election. Not only the CBC declared Jean Charest a winner when he was hundreds of votes behind the PQ candidate, they didn't even bother to remove the question marks from the template. If it wasn't for the turn tide around 11PM, Claude Forgues' supporters would have a good laugh.

Well, here's another goof found by Kate from the Small Dead Animals blog. Kate took a closer look at the picture showing thick black smoke over Toronto (it was used to illustrate the article on the costs of meeting Kyoto mandated CO2 reductions). The file name of the picture was "top-kyoto2.jpg". This numeral 2 looked a little suspicious - if that was a second version of the picture then what happened to the first one? Out of curiosity Kate tried to look for a similar file without the numeral 2 in its name. She was right - the unedited version of the same photograph was there. Still that wasn't the first version since the picture was cropped from a bigger photograph. To make things more interesting, the Lakeview plant shown there had been shut down and the smokestacks which CBC made the symbol of air pollution were demolished in 2006.

When the story hit the blogsphere, the CBC came up with a press release, claiming the altered picture was just a mistake rather than an attempt to mislead. They just wanted to add a "warming filter" to the picture which was "accidentally dropped in a file acceptable for use". As simple as that - it was just an accident, it has nothing to do with the "accept Kyoto or else" fear-mongering campaign, the CBC only wanted the smoke over Toronto to look darker...

In its press release the CBC claims they used a picture of a power plant which was shut down couple years ago to show "the kind of emissions the Kyoto Accord wants to limit". But Kyoto with its emission trading scheme has little to do with limiting or reducing emissions. It would simply force industries and governments to purchase emission credits from other countries that have overachieved their targets by letting their industries die. We'd have the same thick black smoke coming out of the smokestacks in our cities but we would be paying other countries to take the blame. The CBC believes there was no misrepresentation since the photograph they've altered shows emissions from an acknowledged heavy polluter. If they were honest about Kyoto, the picture would also include our pro-Kyoto politicians pretending this is no longer a Canadian smoke.

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Canadian Cross-Bloggers

A new step forward for the Christian media - a Christian blog aggregator. The project is growing fast, promising to develop into a nationwide portal for Canadian Christians. Christians of all denominations, willing to promote their blogs are welcome to join. Archives are kept so if your post is no longer on the front page - it doesn't mean it's gone.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Take Action: Join New Brunswick March For Life!

Received from the New Brunswick Right To Life.

April 27, 2007

URGENT: Please come to the March for Life at the Legislature May 10

Dear Friend of NB Children and Mothers,

I would like to underline the importance of strong participation by pro-life supporters and their families at the upcoming March for Life in Fredericton. This event will be held in front of the Legislature on Thursday, May 10, beginning at 12 noon. Our theme is "More Babies, Fewer Abortions." Former MP Elsie Wayne, Bishop Valery Vienneau of Bathurst, and other speakers will address us. Please see the attached flyer for more information.

I appeal to you, dear friend, to join us. I know this will be a sacrifice of precious time, especially if you must travel a distance. But this has to do with a matter of life or death for countless children in this province.

The success of the March is urgent, because right now the supporters of abortion on putting on a big push in New Brunswick. They are pushing hard for two things:

(1) They are lobbying the government to remove all restrictions against publicly funded abortion on demand at all hospitals and private clinics. Right now there are some restrictions - abortions are not done in most hospitals, and the government does not pay for abortions at the Morgentaler clinic. If these restrictions are taken away, instead of 1,000 babies a year killed from abortion - which happens at present - we could face 2,000 or 3,000 a year! And we’d be paying Morgentaler to do this kind of thing! And all of our regional hospitals would be ending innocent lives!

(2) They are trying to take away the freedom of pro-life people to protest against abortion! They are lobbying the government for a new "bubble zone" law banning any form of peaceful protest near hospitals, clinics or doctor’s offices. They are making false accusations against pro-life people like me - saying we break the law and represent a danger for public safety. They not only seek to get rid of the unborn who have no voice, they want to stop anyone who tries to be their voice!

Please if at all possible make time in your busy schedule to be with us on May 10. We need a BIG crowd to show the politicians - who will undoubtedly be there to observe us - that the people of New Brunswick choose life, we are not for the killing of innocent children, we are for peace not violence!!! The politicians count heads, and a pro-life MLA has told us - be sure to have a big crowd! I know people are coming from several parts of the province, we need more!

Thank you very much for giving this matter your serious consideration. Please pass this on to your friends and family, church etc. On behalf of the littlest ones and their moms, bless you!

Yours for life and love,

Peter Ryan, Executive Director

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Brainwashed Children: YouTube removes the videos

YouTube have removed the videos showing children being brainwashed by perverse propaganda from its website. Officially it was done due to copyright issues. Non-officially - apparently they've received too many complains from queer lobby that didn't want the parents to see what is fed to their kids under the guise of tolerance, acceptance and open-mindedness.

The videos are now available at the Mass Resistance Website. Better watch them now before they're gone again.

Here's a great article on the disappearing videos by John Pacheco:
My advice to parents everywhere: don't wait until the government mandates sexual re-orientation curriculum in the public system on your children. First of all, you will likely not know. And secondly, once it is taught, deprogramming is very difficult to implement.

What's the deal with light bulbs?

No, it's not a light bulb joke. I just don't understand why the government decision to stop the sale of inefficient light bulbs by 2012 infuriated so many of my fellow Conservatives. First of all - it's still five years from now. Believe me, none of the existing incandescent light bulbs will last that long. (Unless of course you stockpile few hundreds of them in your basement.) Then - even after 2012, there will be no "light bulb police" searching houses and smashing old light bulbs. They just won't be on sale anymore. By the way, Home Depot plans to halt the sale of incandescent light bulbs a year earlier - in 2011. So what the panic is all about?

One of the most frequent arguments - the Conservative party is copying the Liberal environmental policy, thus betraying its electorate. I wouldn't agree. The Liberal policy on environment is to tax production. Conservative policy (as I've seen it so far) is to regulate consumption. I oppose Kyoto with its emission trading scheme which doesn't make the air any cleaner. But I don't think it's reasonable to denounce an opportunity to conserve energy (about 100KWh a year per light bulb) just because a Liberal Premier of Ontario thought of it first.

Another argument - the government is not to tell us what light bulbs to use. Yes, banning light bulbs may sound too harsh. But what are the alternatives? Phasing in a new levy on incandescent bulbs so that light bulbs which use nearly five times more energy are taxed nearly five times of their price? Introducing subsidies for compact fluorescent light bulbs so more people consider giving them a try? Or maybe the government should just do nothing and let people use inefficient light-bulbs even if that wastes a few billion Kilowatt-hours a year?

The only valid argument I've noticed so far is that compact fluorescent light bulbs don't work in the cold temperatures, so the phase-out of incandescent light bulbs effectively bans porch lights. Myself I could add that fluorescent light bulbs don't work well with the "touch-turn" lamps, the ones that allow you to choose between three levels of brightness by simply touching the metal ring at the top. But I believe five years should be enough to find a solution for both these issues.

Compact fluorescent light bulbs cost more. But they pay for themselves on a long run. First - because they last few times longer. So even if you rent your apartment and your hydro is paid by the landlord - it makes sense to buy one energy efficient light bulb for $4 than four incandescent light bulbs at $1 each. If however you have to pay your own hydro bills - each energy efficient light bulb will also save you $10 or so in hydro costs per year. That may not sound much. But if you have a big house then I guess you wouldn't mind having some extra $150-$200 for your Christmas shopping, would you?

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Poor brainwashed children

"Poor brainwashed children", one of the YouTube viewers commented on a clip showing Soviet children praising their government on a ceremony dedicated to the 60th anniversary of the October revolution. "It's so heartbreaking to see little kids brainwashed", says former homosexual Stephen Bennett, referring to American children in Massachusetts and New York that are indoctrinated with homosexual propaganda.

Some schools that run these perverse "pride" days demand the students to sign a pledge not to inform their parents. But thanks to the anonymous guy with the video camera, parents worldwide can see what it's like.

According to the video, Cambridge Friends School in Massachusetts has its fourth "pride day" already. Yet the teachers still seem confused. "So we are supposed to tell them it's ok even if their parents oppose it?" one of the teachers asks. Her colleague is a bit more confident, saying that it seems to her they are to tell the kids that perverse lifestyle is normal.

Then come the lessons. The kids are shown a magazine with the pictures of some dancers in it. "She is a lesbian", the teacher says, "her partner's name is Julie". "Julie", the kids repeat. The teacher then points at another dancer. "Is he gay?" one of the kids asks. The teacher answers "yes" and the kids sigh with relief. I bet if the answer was negative, the kids would be booing. In another class the teacher reads a book named "Asha's moms", stopping from time to time to make sure the kids understand the book in a way the school wants them to. No questions asked about what happened to Asha's father. But the question such as "how would you feel if you were her" repeats itself over and over.

Guilt - there's no way that would be left out. Of course, an average man is the source of all evils. The kids are encouraged to confess that if not them then someone they know is "homophobic". "Even in our school some use words like 'fag' and the teachers seem not to notice", one of the kids in the class says. That's a six or seven year old child who is taught to believe that any opposition to perverse lifestyle is wrong. Soviet children were brought up on a story of Pavlik Morozov, a boy who denounced his father to the authorities for "anti-Soviet conspiracy". Are we going to see some Paul Frostman from Massachusetts denouncing his parents for believing in family values?

The first video ends with the PE teacher comparing hiding his "lifestyle" to playing soccer with only one leg, claiming it prevented him from living his life to the fullest. What he didn't mention however is that homosexual men are responsible for nearly 70% of the new AIDS infections, so his "life to the fullest" would be some 20 years shorter than if he'd consider leaving the destructive lifestyle. Of course, nobody mentioned that homosexuality is not hard-wired and there are many organizations and ministries that help homosexuals people return to normal life. So called "pride days" tolerate no opposition. When some high school students, opposed to the propaganda days in their school, wanted to put on T-Shirts saying "Be Happy, not Gay", the principal and later the court forbade them to do so.

Homosexual propaganda in public schools is exclusive to the US. There are more than enough schools in Canada where abnormal lifestyles are presented as healthy, natural, moral and even valuable to society. Some provinces (first and foremost - BC) are considering regulations that won't allow parents to have their kids exempted from these brainwashing lectures. It's time for every parent who doesn't want his kids to be the guinea pigs of an infernal social experiment to speak up.

The videos are now available here.
Article on Life Site.

Monday, April 23, 2007

Melissa Busekros: Home at last

Melissa Busekros, a home-schooled teenage girl from Germany came back home early this morning. Melissa had been forcibly separated from her family 3 months ago by the "Jugendamt" (youth welfare office). Now she's back - not because the officials admitted they were wrong, but because Melissa has turned 16. At this age the German law gives her far more rights to determine her own custody. Melissa acted right away. She left a goodbye note to her foster family and headed home. At 3AM Melissa was at her doorstep in Erlangen - to the astonishment of her family.

Her ordeal may not be over yet. The "Jugendamt" (which kept claiming that Melissa is happy in state custody) may retaliate. Melissa, now aware of her rights is prepared to refuse to leave home if the police is there to seize her again. Her attorney, Dr. Hildebrandt is there to prepare the family for such visits. But today is Melissa's birthday and she is back home to celebrate it with her family. At last, her empty seat at the dinner table is filled.

All I can wish Melissa is that she'll never again be separated from her loved ones.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Kyoto: Not even a drop in the bucket

Since the break-up of the Soviet Union, April 22nd is no longer celebrated as Lenin's birthday. It's called Earth Day nowadays. Google came up with a "melting iceberg" logo. No, the logo is not there to mark the end of the Little Ice Age that drove the Vikings out of North America but to "rise awareness" of what's called "global warming" and "climate change". Thousands attended a protest march in Montreal to pressure the government on Kyoto. The protestors want the government to cut greenhouse gas emissions (rather than reducing air pollution) to avert what they believe is a climate change. Well, they better do the math.

Think of the atmosphere as 100 cases of 24 one-litre bottles of water - 2,400 litres in all.

According to the global warming theory, rising levels of human-produced carbon dioxide are trapping more of the sun's reflected heat in the atmosphere and dangerously warming the planet.

But 99 of our cases would be nitrogen (78%) and oxygen (21%), neither of which are greenhouse gases. Only one case - just 24 bottles out of 2,400 - would contain greenhouse gases.

Of the bottles in the greenhouse gas case, 23 would be water vapour.

Water vapour is the most abundant greenhouse gas, yet scientists will admit they understand very little about its impact on global warming. (It may actually help cool the planet: As the earth heats up, water vapour may form into more clouds and reflect solar radiation before it reaches the surface. Maybe. We don't know.)

The very last bottle in that very last case would be carbon dioxide, one bottle out of 2,400.

Carbon dioxide makes up just 0.04% of the entire atmosphere, and most of that - at least 95% - is naturally occurring (decaying plants, forest fires, volcanoes, releases from the oceans).

At most, 5% of the carbon dioxide in the air comes from human sources such as power plants, cars, oil sands, etc.

So in our single bottle of carbon dioxide, just 50 ml is man-made carbon dioxide. Out of our model atmosphere of 2,400 litres of water, just about a shot glassful is carbon dioxide put their by humans. And of that miniscule amount, Canada's contribution is just 2% - about 1 ml.

If, as Mr. Dion demands, we honoured our Kyoto commitments and reduced our current CO2 emissions by one-third - which would involve shutting down all the coal-fired power generating plants in Canada (and living with constant brownouts and blackouts); or taking all the cars or all the commercial vehicles off the roads; or shutting down the oil sands; or some combination of all these - we would be saving one-third of 1 ml - the tip of an eyedropper.

And somehow, that is supposed to save the planet from warming; the tip of one eyedropper out of 2,400 bottles of water.

Source (Also available here)

Saturday, April 21, 2007

March For Life 2007


May 14, 1969 - Passage of Liberal government's Omnibus Bill that greatly weakened restrictive Canadian abortion laws, jeopardizing the lives of women and children by opening the door to the abortion culture.

Jan. 28, 1988 - Permissive 1969 abortion law, (Section 251) was struck down from the Criminal Code by the Supreme Court of Canada resulting in full legal abortion on demand through all nine months of pregnancy.

To date over 3,000,000 children have been killed by surgical abortions and an untold number by chemical abortions.

Join the 10th National March For Life on May 10th. 5,700 people from across Canada took part in the March for Life last year. This year's goal is 10,000. The rally starts at noon on Parliament Hill.

If you live in New Brunswick and can't attend the March in Ottawa - you're more than welcome to join the March For Life in Fredericton. The rally at the New Brunswick Legislature starts an hour earlier than in Ottawa, at 12PM Atlantic Time - rain or shine.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Free Kyoto? Forget it!

As the polls find, most Canadians support Kyoto. The same polls show that people's support doesn't mean Canadians are ready to pay for reaching Kyoto targets. Majority of those supporting Kyoto want to have it for free.

According to the Angus Reid Strategies poll released few weeks ago, 64% believe Canada should live up to its Kyoto commitment. Yet only 29% would accept a 25c per litre gas tax hike to help reduce emissions. Well, how about a 60c per litre increase in gasoline prices? That will be the price to pay for implementing Kyoto. I bet if the pollsters mentioned 60c per litre as proposed gas price hike, plus a 50% hydro rate increase as well as doubling the price of the natural gas - the number of supporters wouldn't even be in double digits.

The Honourable John Baird, Minister of the Environment tabled a detailed economic impact report called "The Cost of Bill C-288 to Canadian Families and Business" before the Senate committee that studies the bill. The study forecasts immediate and far-reaching impacts on Canadians and the economy including:
• 275,000 Canadians would lose their job by 2009.
• The cost of electricity bills would jump 50% after 2010.
• The cost of filling up a car would jump 60%.
• The cost of heating a home by natural gas would double.

In brief - Canada cannot reach its 2008 to 2012 Kyoto targets, as required under Bill C-288, without intentionally manufacturing an economic recession. Not just any recession but the worst recession since World War II. The GDP will decline by over 6.5% (compared to 4.9% decline in 1981-82). Families will face a reduction in personal disposal income of about $4,000. In actual dollars, the economy would lose $51 billion ($51,000,000,000) in 2008 alone.

Too bad the pollsters didn't have these numbers while asking Canadians to share their opinion on Kyoto. Too bad they couldn't show them this chart so people could see that even if Canada makes 2008 the worst year since the Great Depression to achieve Kyoto targets - that will have absolutely no effect on the environment; that Kyoto-exempt developing countries add much more emissions than Canada could ever cut. If all that information was widely available - we wouldn't have one in three Canadians completely unaware that the protocols of the learned elders of Kyoto come with $50 billion a year price tag.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Better late than never

Bert Brown, Alberta's "Senator in waiting" will finally be appointed to Senate. He will become the second elected Senator in Canadian history to be summoned to the Red Chamber. Unlike his predecessor Stan Waters, who was sworn in within months after his election, Bert Brown has been waiting for 9 years to be appointed. He took the most votes in both 1998 and 2004 Senate nominee elections. But these elections weren't recognized by then-governing Liberals that appointed their own nominees instead. In 2005 Paul Martin went even further, purposely selecting youthful nominees for Alberta to ensure none of those seats becomes vacant anytime soon. However a veteran Liberal Senator Dan Hays decided to retire earlier. Stephen Harper has announced that Bert Brown would fill Hays' seat.

Well, better late than never. Appointing an elected nominee to the Senate is a sign for other provinces to follow suit. The opposition is obstructing the bill that would make Senate nominee elections binding. But a Prime Minister that appoints elected Senators is already there - so the provinces better use the opportunity.

New Brunswick currently has one vacant seat in the Senate. Another seat will become vacant following the retirement of Honorable Marilyn Trenholme Counsell on October 22, 2008. Not sure if Bill C-43 will become law by then. But even if it doesn't - nothing prohibits New Brunswick from holding a Senate nominee election, just as Alberta does. Nominees for both Senate seats could be elected coinciding with the municipal elections in May of 2008. Elected Senators became fait accompli in Alberta. Why would New Brunswick lag behind?

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

The bitter truth about the Charter

The Charter Is Undemocratic-Under this document, Parliament and the provincial Legislatures are essentially powerless in any attempt to represent their constituents if a court rules against a piece of legislation or a current law. What exactly makes a judge, and in particular the nine ones that walk around dressed like Santa Claus, so special, so important, so superior to the rest of us that they are capable of deciding the difference between right and wrong. Charterists freak out at the suggestion that judges should be accountable to the public, implying that the general Canadian public is either too stupid to know this fundamental difference or too morally imperfect to be trusted with such a decision. Might I point out as a rebuke that every Canadian justice as a)human and, in most cases, b)trained as a lawyer! Now who would you rather trust to know right and wrong: a farmer or a lawyer?
Here's some bitter truth about the Charter. The leftists worship this document because it helps them to push forward their agenda and force their views on society. But what are the benefits to average Canadians? To those who must work extra hours to offset higher taxes, when the courts award special interest groups millions in compensation for "hurt feelings"? To those who face longer wait times at the hospitals because governments, threatened by "charter challenges" direct healthcare money to fund abortions and sex change? To those who often have to cede job opportunities and promotions because the same Charter that outlaws discrimination against minorities, permits so called "affirmative actions" which discriminate against average Canadians?

Talking about protection - so far an average Canadian could only see the lack of thereof. When it comes to the so called "charter challenges", rights of a convicted criminal or an Islamic extremist trained in Al-Kaeda camp have precedence over the safety and well being of others. Apparently those same Charter zealots who believe in rights don't believe in responsibilities. Finally, it was the same charter that stripped the unborn Canadians of their right to life. Some 250,000 Canadians live with none of their rights protected. About 300 of them are slaughtered every day - because our Charter-scared lawmakers, schools and healthcare workers aren't allowed to tell women that their unborn child is a person. Because the Charter doesn't consider the unborn as such.

The article I quoted above mentions 5 things that are wrong with the Charter. I'd add another one:
6) The Charter hasn't been signed by one of Canada's founding provinces. That's right, Quebec didn't sign the 1982 Canadian Constitution, therefore the charter (which is a part of the Constitution Act) lacks Quebec signature as well. Mario Dumont, Quebec's new opposition leader has recently announced that Quebec may consider signing the Constitution if Ottawa is ready to reopen the debate on spending power. That would be a great step forward to strengthen the ties between Quebec and the rest of Canada. A just spending formula would benefit all the provinces, not just Quebec. Separatism and alienation would decline not just in Quebec but in other regions as well.

But reopening the debate on spending power won't go far enough without reopening the debate on the Charter itself. The rights should be equally balanced with responsibilities. Discrimination against the silent majority should end and the right to life as well as property rights should be included in the Charter. Trudeau viewed backbench MPs as "nobodies"; the Charter he drafted gave unelected judges the power to change and repeal the laws as they please. Their power should be abrogated to restore the Parliament as the sole lawmaking authority. Only then we can be sure that the Charter is there to represent all Canadians, not just special interest groups.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Glenn Beck: Sick and Tired

I'm sick of everybody being a loving non-racist person, except for me. I am really sick of everybody else's religion being off-limits, except for mine... Until everybody opens up the window and screams it at the top of their lungs, nothing is going to change. (More >>>)

Harshly said but true. Sick and tired - these are the words. When Islamic terrorists kidnap and execute a journalist, the society accepts it as if it was their right to do so. But when a public school practices an anti-terrorism safety drill (which wouldn't be really necessary if it wasn't for some unidentified "youths" and "freedom fighters" with constantly hurt feelings) - the imaginary terrorists are... homeschooling Christian "fundamentalists".

Enough is enough!

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Global warming? I don't think so.

It's snowing in Moncton. What started as a light snow shower on April 4th, had become a severe snow storm that hit Moncton with some 50 centimeters of snow on Easter Sunday. Then just a few days later another snow storm added some 20 centimeters on top of what hasn't melted since last week. And it's still snowing; according to the Yahoo weather forecast snow showers will continue for a couple more days. Only later next week, people in Moncton could expect the temperatures to stay solidly above the zero.

Lack of snow this past Christmas was blamed on global warming. But how would the climate change zealots explain a snow storm in the middle of April? Global cooling? Extra thick layers of greenhouse gases block the sunlight, causing a new ice age? Or maybe they've just admit that weather has its own rules; that these rules are complicated enough even when it comes to outlining a weather forecast for the next week, let alone next century. And that same as a snow storm in April doesn't mean a new ice age, unusually warm December doesn't mean global warming.

Friday, April 13, 2007

A deal that's unlikely to help

About a week ago I was wondering why would Elizabeth May praise Dion. It looks like she wasn't doing that out of courtesy. As it was announced, the Liberals won't run a candidate against Elizabeth May in Central Nova. In return, Elizabeth May will endorse Dion for Prime Minister and, as a token gesture, the Green party won't be running a candidate against Dion.

Most likely, there are some other details to the deal, which will be unveiled later. So far the Green party made it their goal to run full slate. They believed it would contribute to their image as a national party - so the Green party leader would be allowed to participate in the leaders' debates. But if the Liberal support brings Elizabeth May into the televised debates then the Green party might as well sacrifice many other ridings, particularly those where the Liberals lost on a razor thin margin.

But will it help the Green party to elect its first MP? Not likely. Elizabeth May plans to run in Central Nova, where the race is mainly between the Conservatives and the NDP. The Liberal candidate came third in both 2004 and 2006 elections, so not only May needs to keep all the votes the Liberal candidate would otherwise get, but she also needs to attract at least half of the NDP votes to defeat MacKay. That's unlikely to happen.

At the same time, the alliance that May tries to strike with Dion can upset many in the Green party. Those who came to the Green party because they got disappointed with the Liberals in the first place, won't want their party to become nothing but a pro-Liberal environmentalist lobby group. Others may see the deal with the Liberals as a sign that the Green party is too weak to succeed on its own and, just like Briony Penn, a BC environmentalist and a former Green party candidate, they may choose to deal directly with the Liberals. Either way, despite its seeming advantages, the deal may eventually ruin what looked like a good momentum for the Green party.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Remembering the March for Marriage

While we eventually lost the political and legal battle for marriage, the fight will go on as Canada continues its free-fall into moral and social anarchy. We lost the battle but we will eventually win the war. We will win this war because nature is on our side and what man proposes in defiance of nature, nature disposes in its own good time. In other words, the consequences of adopting legislation which is in direct opposition to the natural world and natural order can only lead to defeat. The question, therefore, is not if same-sex "marriage" is overturned but rather when.

15,000 people came to the Parliament Hill on April 9, 2005 to show their support for traditional marriage. I was one of them.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Poor-choicers' true beliefs

Poor-choicers often claim that having an abortion is not as easy as they'd want it to be. They complain about doctors that suggest women seeking abortions to reconsider. Their websites warn women against Pregnancy Resource Centres which, the poor-choicers claim, provide deceiving information about abortions. And of course they can't stand the pro-life protestors that picket abortion clinics, trying to convince the women going inside, that the unborn is more than just a future child, that it's a child with a future.

Poor-choicers don't believe that the unborn child is a person. They claim that abortion decision concerns only the woman in question, so nobody else has the right to try reconvincing her. Thus, if a woman decides to have an abortion, poor-choicers want her to be able to walk into a neighbourhood hospital and have her child destroyed with no questions asked.

If so, it would be reasonable to believe that when a woman decides not to have an abortion, the poor-choicers would accept that decision and allow her to keep the baby with no questions asked. Unfortunately it happens too often that a woman wants to keep the child but her family members, doctors and sometimes - even the courts push her to abort. It happened in Italy when the parents of a pregnant teenager obtained a court order, forcing their daughter to have an abortion "for her own good". Here's another abortion nightmare, from Australia.

This time the victim is not a minor but a married woman. She wanted to keep the baby but the doctors and her community pressured her to have an abortion, claiming that she was inconsiderate for wanting more than two kids. The woman couldn't fight back because of her illness and suffocating pressure. The people around her knew she wanted to keep the baby. But they made the decision for her.

"The doctor said, 'You need to relax and lie back.' He then said 'This exam will be painful, shall I give you some medication for the pain?' Then he put a needle in my arm.

When I woke up, I realised they had terminated my baby.

Two nurses came in and cuddled me saying 'This is for your good, your child's good, your husband's good.' They gave me chocolates for my little boy. The doctor came out and shook hands with the other patients. I was sobbing. He didn't look at me."

Does that look anything like the right to make decisions over woman's own body that the poor-choicers claim to be defending? What poor-choicers defend is selfishness. They often use expressions like "family planning" or "right for reproductive choice" to hide that. But it doesn't change their true beliefs - that killing a child for the sake of convenience is ok and should be accepted by the society. So if a woman wants to keep the baby - in the eyes of the poor-choicers, she simply doesn't know what's good for her.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

What is proposed for Ontario

Ontario Citizens' Assembly wasn't given much time to design a new electoral system. With only 6 weekends available, the Assembly was unable to develop an advanced system that would combine regionally based open lists with a province-wide proportionality. So the simplest option was chosen: A Mixed-Member Proportional system, similar to the one used in New Zealand. Voters will be casting two ballots, one for a local candidate and one for the political party of their choice, electing 90 MPPs from single-member constituencies as well as 39 MPPs - "at large" from closed party lists. If a party wins lesser share of riding seats than its share of the popular vote - list seats will be added to make up the difference.

Obviously, most of the Assembly members considered the lack of proportionality to be the biggest disadvantage of the existing electoral system, so the new voting system proposal was designed to put proportionality first. Even smaller parties (provided they receive more than 3% of the vote) will be represented in the Legislature according to their share of the popular vote. The proposal allows additional "overhang" seats to be added if one of the parties sweeps so many local seats that 39 list seats are not enough to offset the distortion. So the issue of proportionality is well taken care of.

These measures are also designed to address the strategic voting issue. The two-ballot voting allows people to vote for the party of their choice while supporting the "winnable" candidate on the local ballot. By guaranteeing full proportionality (even if it requires adding extra seats to the Legislature), the proposed voting system would encourage Ontarians to vote their conscience on the local ballot as well. However that doesn't eliminate strategic voting completely. Votes for the parties that fail to meet the 3% threshold would still be wasted, not transferred to voters' second choice parties. And, since the party list proportionality doesn't accommodate the Independents, for them it will be either a local seat or nothing.

Ensuring that proportionality doesn't compromise accountability and maintains fair representation for the regions is yet another uneasy task. The Assembly is currently working on a set of guidelines to ensure that parties use democratic process for list nominations. Most likely, the parties will be required to provide full report on their nomination process, as well as demographic and geographic characteristics of their list candidates.

In my opinion, this could be addressed by making at least 30 of the 39 list seats regionally affiliated; that would also allow open lists, thus making "list" MPPs accountable to the voters. Another option is to use flexible lists, made up of local candidates that won fairly large share of the local vote but failed to win seats. Again, that would make "list" MPPs accountable to the voters, let alone that it will encourage even the small parties to run as many local candidates as possible.

But even as it is, I'd consider the new voting system proposal a step in the right direction. If I still lived in Ontario - I'd vote for it. Yes, the proposal is by no means perfect. But it sure beats the current system where voting your conscience often means splitting the vote.

Saturday, April 7, 2007

Reviewing the aggregators

Getting your message to the people is easy. Getting the people to notice your message - that's a different story. It takes minutes to start your own blog. But it takes months to build up an audience, a group of people that would visit your blog regularly, curious what else you got for them today. There are various options for a new blogger. Joining a blog roll or an aggregator is one of them. I started blogging about 3 moths ago. Here's what I can say about the aggregators of which I am a member.

SoCon Blogs
A simple aggregator for the supporters of the Family Coalition Party of Ontario, as well as Social Conservative bloggers from the rest of Canada. That was the first aggregator I joined. A great place to start for a new blogger with Social Conservative views. Posts usually stay visible for some 8 to 12 hours, if not longer. Too bad however there are no archives, so you can't check back on a post you've seen a few days ago but forgot to bookmark.

Opinions Canada
A multi-partisan aggregator for as many as 206 blogs. Most of the blogs are regularly updated and the space is limited, so individual posts don't stay visible longer than a few hours. Yet even that is enough to get noticed, especially if it doesn't take hours for your post to ignite a stormy discussion. The only drawback - the updates are often delayed, so if your post is published after 10PM Atlantic time, it most likely won't be there until early next morning.

Peter's Politics
Excellent aggregator. New posts are shown immediately and stay on the front page for about 6-8 hours, with links to the archives also available. Moreover, if you take a look at the poster's profile, you'll get a list of all his recent posts. So even if your post is no longer on the front page - it doesn't mean it's gone. The aggregator is multi-partisan, so be prepared to run into an article with which you don't agree. But posters speaking on behalf of a political party could have their posts identified by a logo of the party they represent.

Blogging Canadians
This promises to develop into a full-scale portal dedicated to political discussion, which is going to include not just the blog aggregator but also discussion forums, article ratings and probably some other features too. The blogs are identified by the party affiliation so you can choose which blogs you're in the mood to read. Also you can vote for the posts you like - that's yet another nice feature. So far it's still under development; updates only take place once or twice a day and some of the posts may be left out; not sure if it's because the site administration considers them controversial or if they simply get unnoticed by the person who does the updates.

And finally - Free Dominion
Not just a huge discussion forum for Conservatives (any Conservatives, not only SoCons) but also a blog aggregator. Not every article makes it to the front page but the best of them do.

Thursday, April 5, 2007

And then she goes and spoils it all...

By saying something stupid like "Dion is magnificent".

The Green party support doubled since the Liberals started positioning environment and climate change as nation's top priority. This was the greatest gift the Green party could ever dream of. A major opposition party was advertising their platform for them. Dion's obsession with environment encouraged many to throw their support behind a party that has been campaigning to make environment the key issue for some 20 years. Some polls showed the Green party support at 11-12%, ahead of the Bloc and nearly catching up with the NDP. If the election took place now, the party could look forward to elect its first MPs; maybe as many as 12 of them, which would give the Green party the official status in the House of Commons.

But then Elizabeth May says that Stephan Dion could do the job better than her. Why? Was it just a mistake, when an attempt to criticize John Baird by showing him how great was his predecessor eventually backfired at the Green party itself by making it look irrelevant? Or was it done on purpose, to prevent the Green party from splitting the Liberal and the NDP vote? Is Elizabeth May deliberately sacrificing her party just because she believes Dion is better than Harper?

Either way, her statements could easily ruin what seemed like a good start for the Green party. The same people, who decided that if environment is that important then they'd rather support the original environmentalist party, may now decide that if Dion is so good for the environment then there's no real need to support the Greens. Supporting the Liberals would do just fine, let alone that a vote for the Liberals is usually much more efficient than a vote for the Green party. One of the former Green party candidates in Vancouver has already decided that a Liberal nomination is much more promising. As the party leader moves away from the plan to elect the first Green MPs, calling for strategic voting instead, we may see some more Green candidates abandoning the party.

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

Workplace safety - the way unions see it

Apparently CUPE-3906 was unable to call a strike over the pro-life events at McMaster University. But they did their best trying to disrupt the services on campus by suggesting those opposed to the events not to show up for work. E-mail notice was sent to each member informing them that "radical anti-choice groups" were to hold a public event at McMaster University. The union promised support to those choosing to refuse work on the days they believe their workplaces are "unsafe".

But how could the presence of a pro-life group on campus make one's workspace "unsafe"? Here's what the e-mail notice stated: "Several members of our local have registered their concern that... hostile imagery and language they have employed, is intimidating and that the permission of these groups to dominate public and high-traffic spaces on campus makes them feel personally unsafe." In other words, they don't like to be told (let alone shown) that abortion stops a beating heart and destroys a living person.

This year's event included a presentation from the Silent No More group. Women that actually had abortion share their life experience, warning others not to make the same mistake they did. But CUPE doesn't want their message. They'd rather believe abortion is an ordinary medical treatment such as extracting a tooth or removing a wart - fast, affordable and above all - harmless. Then they don't mind watching an abortion video and they even applaud the professor as he explains in full details how did he provoke a premature birth, destroying the child just minutes before he could have had his first breath.

But maybe the union is just worried about its members having to go through a crowd of activists whose views they oppose? Well, would they excuse a Christian employee from coming to work on one of those so called "pride days"? That looks unlikely judging on this case. The collective agreement allows employees to divert their union dues to charity if their religious beliefs prevent them from contributing to the union, but Susan Comstock was denied that right. The judge sided with the Public Service Alliance of Canada, stating that "the union's political or social cause does not force her to act in a way contrary to her beliefs or her conscience". But if contributing as much as $800 a year to an organization that denounces Susan's views as "hate speech" is not acting in a way contrary to her beliefs then what is?

The membership in the union is mandatory. The only way to stop paying union dues is quitting the job. At the same time there is no way for an ordinary employee to voice his protest when the union management spends his money on campaigns that are completely unrelated to negotiating just wages and working conditions. Let alone when some activists that run the union declare "zero tolerance" to any views but theirs, forcing people to choose between their jobs and their conscience.

Susan Comstock feels that union's political agenda made her an outcast at her job. She is treated as if her contribution in the workplace is unwelcome, inferior and of little or no positive value. That doesn't sound anything like feeling safe in the workplace, does it? The unions claim all their members are equal. But the facts show that those who stand for the right to life and the sanctity of marriage are less equal than others.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Alarming lows

Over 100,000 abortions are performed in Canada each year. That's the official statistics. The actual numbers are higher than that since some surgical or chemical abortions are not reported as such. Yet even that is not enough for the NDP Health Critic Penny Priddy and NDP Women's Critic Irene Mathyssen. They complain that many Canadian mothers do not have easy enough access to doctors willing to abort their babies.

Responding to a report provided by an abortion lobby group named "Canadians for choice" the two MPs were outraged with the fact that a percentage of hospitals performing abortions went down from 17.8% to 15.9%. They condemn the governments of PEI, New Brunswick and Manitoba for restricting access to abortions (rather than making them available at any hospital upon demand at the taxpayers' expense), claiming that "abortion access falls to alarming lows".

The NDP press release ends with a statement that "All women in Canada have a right to abortion services under the Charter of Rights and Freedoms and within the framework of the Canada Health Act". The truth however is that the Charter does not say anything about a "right to abortion" and that the Canada Health Act does not require provinces to pay for elective injurious procedures such as abortions on demand.

Meanwhile abortion numbers remain above 100,000 a year. Nearly one in three pre-born children in Canada does not live to see daylight. Does that look anything like an "alarming" decline in access to abortion? I'd say it's the NDP and the poor-choice activists that have sunk to alarming lows.