Category Archives: Politics


Moral Values

They are explicitly saying, for the first time, that the intelligence community should have the ability to treat prisoners inhumanely.

Apparently the willingness to torture other human beings is a sign of superior morality. With independent investigations into prisoner abuse also under veto threat, it seems those most militantly evangelical about democracy find transparency of government unthinkable. I’ve never been more disgusted in my life.

The Empire of Reason…

…has fallen. But Al Gore’s still making some sense. This time, he laments that knowledge and ideas no longer mediate between wealth and power in America–thanks, in large part, to the nature of the television marketplace. I only wish he’d expanded on the bit at the end about the comparable threat to the Internet. As Jonathon Schwartz recently remarked, “the best thing about the internet is it doesn’t have an editorial policy”. Maybe we should not be so quick to take that for granted.

Darth Vader and the Neocons

The Washington neocons go searching for their souls and discover them in Anakin Skywalker and Emperor Palpatine…

“To paraphrase neoconservative godfather Irving Kristol, an evil Sith lord is a noble Jedi knight mugged by reality.”

And as long as you’ve no qualms about brutality…

“Palpatine is a dictator–but a relatively benign one, like Pinochet. It’s a dictatorship people can do business with.”

The shroud of the dark side has fallen, indeed.

I Can’t Believe I Watched the Budget Vote

Watching a live Parliamentary vote on a budget bill is hardly my preferred form of entertainment, but last night was high political drama to the point I couldn’t tear myself away from the hypnotic calling out of MPs names as they stood to vote for or against the confidence motion against the government. How many Canadians held their breath when the moment came for the single independent MP still in play to stand or remain seated? Well, it’s history now: Chuck Cadman stood up, the government survived. And what started as a vote of no-confidence in the Liberal government has turned instead into a question of confidence in the hard-right leadership of the (formerly progressive) Conservative party.

Maybe it’s time for Stephen Harper to stop insisting that the duty of the loyal opposition is to replace the government, and get on with his real job of constructive debate and intelligent compromise. That’s what Canadians want from a minority parliament–not the desperate drama of a young party leader’s personal ambitions. As for his freshly-minted claims to provide a federalist alternative to the Bloc in Quebec–get a grip Mr. Harper. You’re not fooling anyone.