7/26/2005

Feminism

Not everything about feminism is bad. It secured women the right to vote and equal opportunity in the work force. Women who are intellectually or, albeit less likely, physically equal to men face significantly fewer prejudices than the women of yesteryear.
However, there is a lot that is bad about feminism. It brought us an age of weak and whiny women who don't want equal opportunity, they want more. It brought us young girls dressed as prostitutes who naively believe that they are not sluts but liberated. It brought us fringe lesbian groups who actually believe that men only exist for the purpose of breeding.
Worst of all, it brought an unholy and unscriptural drive to enter what Christians call "The Ministry."

Yesterday as I was driving home with my husband I happened to catch on the radio about an ordination ceremony for women wishing to become Catholic priests. I checked this morning and articles here, here and elsewhere were running similar stories.
I decided to look up this site for more information on the movement in the Catholic church. Protestants suffered through this a short while ago, many churches are still struggling, so I know what their arguments are.
Arguments for women as pastors or ministers tend so go somewhat like this:
- God is not a respecter of persons; He does not discriminate.
- God loves everyone.
- Who are you to tell me if I have been called or not?
- I am just as competent (or more) than a man
- Some wildly out of context reference to Deborah
The Catholic arguments are somewhat different, but equally invalid.
- One priesthood in Christ
- Empowered to preside at the Eucharist (communion)
- Cultural bias
- Women have been deacons
- The ability for women to be ordained has been present in the Church’s latent Tradition (ie: Mary is considered a priest)
- The wider Church accepts women priests
- Women too are, in fact, called to be priests (because they feel it)
Of these seven arguments, not one is based on Scripture relevant to the subject. While it is true that there were women deacons (although, some translations use the phrase deacon's wives instead) in the Bible, the role of a deacon is not the same as that of a priest. A deacon's job is to look after the poor. There were also women prophets in the Bible, but again the job of a prophet is not the same as that of a priest or minister.
I have yet to see an adequate argument that can disprove Paul's exhortation to Timothy.
"Let a women learn in silence and submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or have authority over a man, but to be in silence." I Timothy 2:11,12
This is hard for most women to hear. The role of a pastor, minister or priest does have within it a teaching component. If women are not supposed teach men, then how can you be a preacher?
One aspect that nearly all women ignore when arguing for their "right" to the ministry is that our exclusion from it has nothing whatsoever to do with our ability. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that women are less competent than men. It doesn't say we aren't capable of putting together a sermon or expounding on the Word. In fact, I can assure you that anyone with the right combination of research and presentation skills can put together a well sounding sermon quite easily. However, what a sermon sounds like has almost nothing to do with its quality or the influence of the Holy Spirit. In fact, the ability of a preacher is microscopic compared to the ability of God. You can sound fabulous but walk in total rebellion. Likewise, you can sounds terrible but be doing exactly the right thing. There are a ton of Biblical references to back this up, so I need only direct you to the lives of people like Moses, Jeremiah and Timothy.
The exclusion of women has to do with the curse placed on us after the Fall. "I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in pain you shall bring forth children; your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you." Genesis 3:16
There are two ways of interpreting the phrase "desire for your husband," and each is equally valid. One is to understand it as the explanation for why women have a greater drive to get married or spend more time in destructive relationships than men do. The other is to understand that it means that women desire the position of a man, hence the curse of being ruled by them. In this light, the struggle of women to enter the ministry is a part of the curse and cannot be interpreted in any way as a good thing. It's a part of our sin nature, and must be overcome.
Ministerial roles should not be the front for the last great battle of the sexes. Instead of grappling for positions of authority, women desiring to minister should be able to find enough to do humbly serving the poor or the needy. Consider the growing number of battered women, unwed teenage mothers or drug addicted prostitutes. If you consider yourself strong enough to lead a church, why can you not focus on these individuals instead? They need you as a role model, as a source of strength. You are probably quite capable of standing up for yourself; these women are not. There is a lot to be said for those who pour their souls into the lives of such as these.

7/25/2005

Making the Wrong Call...

According to the BBC, Canada.com and other news sources, the man shot in the London tube on Friday was the wrong guy. Not surprisingly, his remaining family is very angry and considering legal action.
However, I have a question. In light of these comments:
- When he was challenged by police in the Tube station, he fled, reportedly leaping the ticket barrier.
- Witnesses said Menezes ran into a subway car, where officers shot him. It was unclear why Menezes, who spoke English, did not stop.
Do people honestly believe the police did the wrong thing in shooting him?
I am not so sure they did.
It is certainly tragic that an innocent man lost his life. I do not blame his family for being angry. However, if he did nothing wrong, in light of recent events in London, it would have a much better choice to stop and talk to the police. From the news reports, it seems clear that he knew he was being followed and that he understood what was going on. Why leap a ticket barrier?
The chance of the police concluding that he was some random innocent man running away for no reason seems minimal. Although they made the wrong call, I doubt they would have done anything else. If he had been a terrorist and they did nothing, then the situation would have been much worse.

7/22/2005

Same Sex Marriage Troubles Continue

Read the article...

"It's a sad day for the majority of Albertans who believe in the traditional definition of marriage," Klein said in an interview Thursday. "We have to obey the law of the land, and it's unfortunate that such a law would be passed."
I couldn't agree more, Mr. Klein.
Of course, a lot of people didn't agree with you, but I do.
I also agree with Grant Hill, a former Conservative MP from Calgary, who said:
"Marriage has more than the purpose of just romance between two individuals. There is a fairly significant societal component to marriage both for children and for responsibility."
But this, I just don't get:
Wilson, an ordained minister who serves a gay congregation in Edmonton, said many gay couples want a church wedding and the traditional bond that comes with a marriage.
Why the focus on a church wedding? You aren't practicing Christians, so why the great need to have your wedding solemnized before God? Why isn't a civil service with a Justice of the Peace enough? Do you think that God is going to be present at your wedding, that He will bless it? God doesn't even condone homosexuality. To suggest He would bless a homosexual marriage displays a total lack of Scriptural understanding.

London News

At the BBC:
Man shot dead by police on Tube
Eyewitness Report
Travel Disruption
Fear and defiance of London's commuters

At Canada.com
Suspect killed at subway station -- Mosque receives bomb threat
Al Qaida
Two arrested in London blasts
Timeline

7/21/2005

London Bombed... Again

According to Canada.com and other sources, more bombs went off in London this morning. Only one person was hurt.
The London police commissioner confirmed Thursday that four explosions took place in what he described as "serious incidents."
"We've had four explosions - four attempts at explosions," Metropolitan Police Commissioner Ian Blair said outside police headquarters at Scotland Yard.
"At the moment the casualty numbers appear to be very low ... the bombs appear to be smaller" than the July 7 blasts.

On Iraq

Read this article.
Warning: the content is extremely graphic in nature. The article details some of Saddam's activities while in power.

7/20/2005

Meanwhile...

Miss Universe was banned from participating in the opening of a Thai festival in Toronto this weekend. The ban has now been removed, however, I feel I must point out the "logic" used in order to place the ban in the first place.
City officials enforced a bylaw that bans activities deemed degrading to men or women through sexual stereotyping. The bylaw was enacted in the early 90s after a bikini contest held in the square caused backlash. Specifically, the bylaw states:
"Activities which degrade men or women through sexual stereotyping or exploit the bodies of men, women, boys or girls solely for the purpose of attracting attention are not permitted on the square."

Consider the situation.
Glebova won the Miss Universe pageant. Granted, many people (even myself) view the pageant as a bad thing because it reinforces a negative stereotype on women. However, and this is an ENORMOUS however, the pageant took place in Thailand, not in Toronto. Because Glebova won the pageant, she was asked to open the ceremony.
Fine.
Wonderful.
This seems like a normal task for a Miss Universe winner.
However, her opening the ceremony falls under the category of sexual degradation and/or exploitation.
Add to this the fact that gay pride parades are not only allowed, but encouraged.
Does this make any sense to anyone? It sure doesn't to me! How is opening a ceremony sexual exploitation when walking downtown Toronto half naked is not?

By the way, there is a SoundOff! section there. It would appear that I am not the only one who sees the irony of the situation. Some of the comments:
- Coming from a city with a rather well known gay parade I find it ironic they would not allow Miss Universe to take part in something simple.
- Can the powers that be, or anybody for that matter, explain to me how come the Gay Pride Parade is OK, but a straight beauty queen is not.
- If I was from Toronto I would be embarrassed beyond belief. World-class city, my ass. What a sad commentary on the times.
- It is not demeaning for a woman to act like a woman. (I like that comment a lot, actually.)
- Sound like this by-law is intended to protect the feelings of ugly people by discriminating against really attractive people!
- Only in Canada!! These people are pathetic.....they promote the Gay Pride parade as the second coming of Christ, the mayor attends, the police chief attends, the pro-gay media sychophants fall all over themselves praising it....yet somehow a Miss Universe opening a festival is 'degrading sexual stereotyping'. Are these people brainless?? Does the Gay Pride not stress sexual stereotyping?? But in 'world class Toronto' a normal woman is somehow being stereotyped by appearing at this festival. What a bunch of absolute morons. How embarrassing and petty.....and somehow this makes it to the top of the mayor's agenda!!
- Has anyone ever been to a gay pride parade? Talk about hypocritical. Drag queens and fairies are not sexual stereo types according to the City of Toronto but Miss Universe is.
- Only in Toronto can a group of people sit in judgement of an intelligent woman. The fact that she is beautiful should not detract from the fact that she is well spoken, intelligent and a wonderful ambassador for the city and country.A pageant where manners poise and personal conduct matter is apparently degrading to women but put a bunch of half naked men simulating sexual acts on a float and not only is it acceptable but attended by the mayor who snubbed Miss Universe How far we have come in a world where women still are not free to make their own decisions without being shot down by others. So much for furthering a new way of thinking.
- the collective intelligence in this city goes down every year.

And the Senate Voted

Last night, the Senate voted to approve same sex marriage.
The bill passed with a vote of 47-21, and 3 abstentions.
But really, was there ever any doubt?

A Sign of Things to Come

Saskatchewan Justice Minister Frank Quennell has made it clear that refusal to marry same sex couples is not an option for civic officials in his province. A 69-year-old marriage commissioner from Regina, Orville Nichols, says performing same-sex marriages does not accord with his religious and personal beliefs and may therefore lose his job.
According to the Globe & Mail a gay couple who asked Nichols to perform their wedding in early May. After he refused, the couple filed a complaint with the Saskatchewan Human Rights Commission and now Mr. Nichols' job is on the line. But he says he will not go down without a fight.
In Newfoundland, at least one in 10 marriage commissioners resigned. In Manitoba,at least 12 commissioners have resigned. In Saskatchewan, at least eight of the commissioners have quit. The article makes no mention of what the reaction has been in other provinces.
Justice Minister Irwin Cotler repeatedly promised that religious rights would not be trumped by the equality provisions of the Charter. This is a promise he should never have made. As I have already pointed out, there have already been several cases in Canada where the so-called equality of gays have done exactly that.
I fully expect to see more of these types of legal battles. It will be interesting to see how our government responds... if it responds at all.

7/19/2005

An Email I Received

Subject: Denzel Washington: Brooks Army Medical Center

Don't know whether you heard about this but Denzel Washington and his family visited the troops at Brook Army Medical Center, in San Antonio,Texas (BAMC) the other day. This is where soldiers that have been evacuated from Germany come to be hospitalized in the States, especially burn victims. They have buildings there called Fisher Houses. The Fisher House is a hotel where soldiers' families can stay, for little or no charge, while their soldier is staying in the hospital. BAMC has quite a few of these houses on base but as you can imagine, they are almost completely filled most of the time.
While Denzel Washington was visiting BAMC, they gave him a tour of one of the Fisher Houses. He asked how much one of them would cost to build. He took his check book out and wrote a check for the full amount right there on the spot. The soldiers overseas were amazed to hear this story and want to get the word out to the American public, because it warmed their hearts to hear it.
The question I have is why does Alec Baldwin, Madonna, Sean Penn and other Hollywood types make front page news with their anti-everything America crap and this doesn't even make page 3 in the Metro section of any newspaper except the base newspaper in San Antonio?


I love that last line.

7/15/2005

The Political Life of the Tundra Swan

I rarely write about environmental issues. However, when a friend of mine who works for a particular non-proft organization directed me to this article, I simply could not pass it up. I'm a weakling when it comes to mocking dumb opinions.

"This area west of Port Rowan is a major spring and fall staging area for tundra swans. It never used to be. But since swans have figured out there is abundant remnant grain in the vicinity, this neighbourhood has become a feeding ground. Some days, thousands of swans can be seen here gorging themselves...Tundra swans may choose to forage in fields elsewhere. It’s a reasonable expectation. There are thousands of fields like this in south-central Ontario. Tundra swans are already patronizing a great number of them. They seem to have a talent for locating farmers with leaky combines."
Where do I begin with statements like these?
Swans are animals. Beyond instinct, they aren't capable of figuring much out at all and they certainly do not have anything approaching talent. Words such as patronizing and gorging would imply that the swans are feeding there on purpose with evil intent. Honestly, swans don't know the difference. When hungry, they eat. If there's a convenient place to eat along their migratory path, that's where they will stop. That they never stopped there before doesn't have anything to do with it.
"Many members of the environmental movement have a hidden agenda. Some aren’t interested in substituting clean electricity for dirty electricity. Instead, they want society to return to an imagined Lost Arcadia, where people allegedly lived a simple, bucolic existence in harmony with nature. With this crowd, modern amenities such as electricity are rejected while the romantic lore of the peasant is embraced. Others believe people must take a backseat to nature in the raw. These people regard humans and civilization as a blight on the planet. We won’t be rehabilitated till we swear off convenience and creature comforts. We won’t be redeemed till we return to our hunter-gatherer ways. In an ideal world, we wouldn’t be here at all."
As far as ad hominem attacks go, nothing beats the phrase "hidden agenda." I won't even bother pointing out the fact that the "environmental movement" the author is referring to is a legitimate, not for profit organization that is not exactly a fringe group. They have both corporate and government sponsors and an ugly website. The remainder of his argument rests on what only amounts to unsupportable silliness. "Blight on the planet?" "Wouldn't be here at all?"
Well, in his case, who's to say?
I would love to ask this guy what exactly his expertise is in either wind farms or Tundra Swans.

Politics and Podcasting

The Conservative Party has added podcasting to their website. Leader Stephen Harper has released his latest speech, and Stephen Taylor has added it to the Blogging Tories Podcasts.

And the Catholic Steps up the Fight

I happened to hear on the radio this morning that the Catholic Church has refused to baptize the children of same sex couples. This report would seem to at least partially confirm it.
...an official with the Conference of Catholic Bishops said yesterday that would be the case only if both fathers or both mothers insisted on signing the baptismal certificate.
It will be interesting to see what will happen in a case where only one parent chooses to sign.

7/14/2005

And Speaking of Extremists...

Read the article...
For those that don't have a subscription, here is what it says (and no, I'm not kidding...)

Editorial, July 12.

To suggest the best way for Prime Minister Paul Martin to honour Chuck Cadman's memory would be to call a by-election quickly is to make his courageous effort to get to Ottawa on May 19 a waste of whatever strength he had remaining.
Historically, Surrey North elects representatives who are right of centre. In this case, it will most logically elect a Conservative. That Conservative will vote quite opposite to the way Cadman voted should there be another non-confidence motion. Fundamentally, representatives in a party-based system such as ours do not break ranks on matters of confidence. The vote of confidence was decided by independents, of which Cadman was one. No one breaks rank with his or her party on confidence motions, else that politician is immediately cast out . Only a truly elected independent, such as Cadman, can purely and completely vote the way a majority of his riding wants him to, once he's fairly sure he has a true picture of their wishes.
Cadman's constituents did not want to go to the polls this spring. It's probably safe to say, that feeling hasn't changed in the last two months. Cadman has chosen, I'm sure, competent staff for his constituency who mirror his attitudes and beliefs and who will continue to deal with constituents' cases efficiently and sympathetically. Also, Cadman's constituents very clearly were concerned about the expense of an early election which would probably not have dramatically changed the composition of the House. A single by-election would cost at least $250,000 only to be re-run less than a year from now.
If Martin truly wants to honour the memory of Chuck Cadman, who went to superhuman lengths to cast a vote against a precipitous election, he will ensure Cadman's staff has the backup required to continue to serve the constituents of Surrey North in a manner to which they are accustomed. And he will honour Cadman's last wishes rather than "move quickly" to call a by-election.

Carolyn Parrish, Independent MP, Mississauga-Erindale


Translation of the "logic" used.
Chuck Cadman is dead.
A by-election must be called to replace him.
He voted to support us.
It is unlikely that his area will elect another candidate so inclined to support us.
Therefore, stall the by-election.

The Left's Take on The Right

I spotted this post at Bound By Gravity so I decided to check out the posts mentioned. Some comments are made in the second post that are not supported by any evidence and yet would appear to be accepted without question by everyone involved in that discussion. For example:
...outlandish wingnut comments that come from some Blogging Tory quarters
Like what?
I have recently tracked a number of BT sites, and I have seen a drastic increase in openly xenophobic statements and remarks
Again, I have to ask, like what? And what do you consider to be a xenophobic remark?
...political parties hardly ever listen to their members...
No. The Liberal Party hardly ever listens to its members. The Conservatives are quite good at it. I only need point out party behaviour over Bill C-38 as an example.
They're media spinners. They take the stories they hear and re-report them. If they're wrong they try and spin that.
MmmHmm. Boy is this ever like the pot calling the kettle black. Even if it were true, and no one provides an example to show that it is, it has to be one of the most hypocritical statements I have ever seen. Kinda like this one:
...they're not putting out original thought.
The most insightful comment is this one, and should give anyone reading the discussion a very clear idea of where everyone here is actually coming from:
Having said that, there are a number of good people in the BT group who have made some reasonable and rational observations about political life in Canada and their own party, and they must be applauded. For the most part, these people are Progressive Conservative, rather than Reform/Alliance supporters, and I find this extremely telling.
So, in other words, the "best" Blogging Tories members are the red tories, not blue ones. Silly me, how could I ever have thought that social and moral conservatives could possibly have anything valid or insightful to say on the pathetic state of Canadian politics?
Last but not least:
I've taken many a Blogging Tory to task over calling the entire Liberal Party and its membership corrupt over the Sponsorship Scandal.
What can I say? You were stupid for doing so. The entire Liberal Paty is corrupt. That you refuse to open your eyes and see it doesn't make you right, only blind.

I have a question (a couple, actually): if the Blogging Tories are so full of extremists, why bother to read any of the member blogs? Why not just ignore those you think are "xenophobic?" People aren't going to change their opinions for you if they think you are wrong... and yes, most right-wing individuals do believe the left is wrong. That's why we're right-wing. Why go off and complain about what you perceive as being their small mindedness? Ignore it and go about your life.
Let me be frank: I read practically no lefty blogs. I just don't care about what you have to say. I can pick up any old newspaper I want to and will find your opinion, so there is really no reason for me to waste my time. In this case, I made an exception because I am particularly interested in the effects of blogging on politics.
Take for example this incident that happened to Canadianna. Why did some group of lefties get their panties in such a bundle that four blogs with a total of twelve separate individuals feel the need to trash her opinions? Not only that, but someone actually got so frustrated that they hacked her blog. I now see that according to Small Dead Animals, Colbert's Comments is going through the same thing. Instead of participating in intelligent, enlightened discussion, a couple of people got together, stuck out their collective tongues and went "Nyah. We don't like you" and then started throwing sticks. The same thing goes on in the Rabble forum all the time (refer to post below entitled a Dishonourable Mention).
If someone's opinion is going to frustrate you that much, don't read it. It's the easiest thing in the world to find something else to do with your time.

Our Naive Vanity

Remember this post of mine? It was about a survey that indicated that 94% of Canadians believe that other countries have a positive view of us.
Now read what happens when that sort of thinking makes its way into the highest levels of government.
"...until last January, federal and provincial ministers responsible for emergency preparedness had not met in eleven years...it took over four years after the 9/11 terrorist attacks and two years after the SARS outbreak for the federal government to convene a federal, provincial and territorial meeting to improve Canada’s ability to respond to natural and man-made disasters."
This is what happens when you put people in charge who not only believe that everyone likes us, but believe that <insert your choice of terrorist attack here> will never happen to us.

7/13/2005

More on London

According to this article at Canada.com, it would appear that all four of last weeks attacks were the work of suicide bombers. What's more, 3 out of 4 of the bombers were of Pakistani descent. There is an interesting comment made in the article:
Pakistan's government has been a key ally in the war on terror, hunting down hundreds of al-Qaida suspects and turning them over to the United States. But as in most of the Islamic world, its citizens have been deeply opposed to British and American military action in Afghanistan and Iraq.
I am curious. How can Pakistan be a key ally in the war on terror if they are also deeply opposed to military action in Afghanistan and Iraq? What did they think the war on terror would involve? Street protests?

By the way, there is a SoundOff! on how to prevent suicide bombers here. While I am inclined to think that not much can be done to prevent a truly determined suicide bomber, one individual had a unique solution:
Lets announce right now that the remains of any suicide bombers will be wrapped and buried in pigskin.

7/09/2005

An Article

Read the article...
This was found by Stephen Taylor, as a part of the post on the Ipsos Reid poll mentioned below.

Of particular note in the article is this comment: You would also expect this electronic revolution to be good for the Democrats, but the American left's relationship with the internet has been disastrous. The internet has sunk a knife into Bill Clinton's moderate Democratic party.
It would be interesting to try determine if the same is true for the left here in Canada. I already mentioned that I noticed the left seemed to be trailing as far as blogging communities go. Of course, it will be impossible to feel the true power of the internet on politics until the next election.
Another interesting point: An online community of bloggers performs the same function as yesteryear's town meetings. Through the tradition of town hall meetings, officials were held to account by local people.
And it is this holding to account that our country is so desperately in need of... especially in light of the Sponsorship Scandal.

And by the way I love people who agree with me: For years there have been widening gaps between the governing class and the governed...
I should go back and count the number of times I have said that.

7/08/2005

Politics and Blogging

I knew I wasn't imagining things.
Stephen Taylor has this interesting post on a recent poll done by Ipsos Reid.
Finally, some evidence to back that idea that I have been touting (see here, here, here and here. Granted, a poll is not a great source but it's a start. I would also question their statistic that says more men write blogs than women. I have seen others that would suggest the opposite is true, especially when you are dealing with blogs that are more like private journals.

Detailed Info

CTV has some very detailed information on the London bombings. There is even a chronology there. I recommend this site because it seems to have more comprehensive coverage (for Canadian media outlets that is) than anywhere else.

We Should Be There

I highly recommend this post by Garth Turner. I whole-heartedly agree with his closing sentiment.

Some say Canada is avoiding the kind of retribution London experienced this morning by trying to avoid fighting, criticizing the Americans and pretending none of this really affects us. But that is a false belief. The consequences of inaction could be stunning. Many of us thought this was a lesson Canada learned six decades ago.
Shame on us. We should be there.

London Bombed IV

According to the report by the BBC, the London bombings have claimed the lives of more than 50 people. Over 700 have been injured. It has not yet clear whether the attack on the bus in Woburn Place was the work of a suicide bomber, but it is certainly being considered a possibility.
In response to a statement made by Respect MP George Galloway, the Home Secretary Charles Clarke has said "there is no evidence the attacks on London were carried out because of the UK's role in the Iraq war... "The fact is that the people who make these kind of attacks are about destroying the very essence of our society: our democracy, our media, our multicultural society and so on. "That's not about Iraq or any other particular foreign policy issue, it's about a fundamentalist attack on the way we live our lives.""

7/07/2005

Rule Britannia

How they handle it

My sister sent me that.
Fitting, under the circumstances.

Where do people get this stuff?

On this page at CTV, you'll see a link to CTV Newsnet Live: Martin answers questions from reporters, a clip that is about 21 minutes long. Open the clip and fast forward to 27:30/34:22. You will hear the following question:
in 3 weeks time, on 28 July, we'll mark 250 anniversary of the British expulsion from Nova Scotia of 6,000 francophone Acadian familes, a major act of ethnic cleansing. On this anniversay, will you hold a reconcilliation meeting among the 4 G8 countries concerned, Canada, the US, Franc and Britian and treat them to a meal of cajun cooking?
To which Paul Martin went "Uuhhmmmm. Well... aahhh... this is.. uh..." before responding.

How did he ever prevent himself from insulting the moron who asked that?

Martin in the Wake of London Bombings

The right hand column on this page at CTV has some links to portions of a press conference with Paul Martin in the wake of the London bombings.

What Our Leaders Had to Say...

Read the article...

These statements were made sometime this morning.

Martin:
Today, we have been witness to acts of cowardice and terror. The London bombings are an unspeakable attack on the innocent and on a way of life.
On behalf of all Canadians, I have extended to Prime Minister Blair the condolences and the sympathies of our nation. We pray for those who have lost their lives, and for their families.
Canadian security forces are working closely with those of Great Britain. We stand ready to provide any assistance that may be required at this difficult hour and in the days and weeks ahead.
Our collective freedom has come under attack today by those who would use violence and murder to force extremism upon the world. We must and we will stand against these terrorists. We will do so together. And we will prevail.


Harper:
It is with sadness mixed with anger that we watch the unfolding tragedy in London today.
We are reminded that we must be ever vigilant to guard against acts of terrorism and to remain steadfast in our resolve to bring to justice all those who commit these treacherous and cowardly crimes.
Our hearts and prayers go out to the victims and survivors and their friends and families as they struggle with this assault on their basic freedoms and their very lives.
We extend our support to Prime Minister Blair and all Britons who are coping with this tragedy.


Layton:
Like all Canadians, I am repulsed by the violence we have witnessed today in London and express our deepest condolences to the families of the victims and to all those affected.
I join with Prime Minister Blair, Prime Minister Martin and the other G-8 leaders in strongly condemning these acts of terrorism. We will not allow it to undermine Canadian society, our institutions or our beliefs in democracy, human rights, tolerance, and equality.
Indeed, we must go forward today with greater determination to build a world that embraces these ideals.
As evidence of that resolve, I urge the leaders gathered in Gleneagles to press on with their stated agenda to address global climate change and to meeting our commitments to fight gloal poverty.
Once more, our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families.

Market Reaction

CTV News is discussing the reaction of the market to the attack in London. Stocks dropped quickly at first, but then levelled off. In London, the drop ended up being about 2%... apparently normal on a bad day. Here and in the US, the drop has been even less.
There is concern, but not panic.
This is intetesting. I am sure we can all remember the drop after 9/11. That incident does not seem to be repeating itself. People have learned something since then. Security has been tightened in several areas, as prudence dictates. However, a maturity has developed, seemingly without anyone being aware of it. Watching the news, the general response seems to be that these things will come, they are now a part of life but this does not mean that people should live in fear. Be careful, be wise, but do not be afraid.

By the way, Martin will be making his address at 2pm.

Related News

Read the article...

It would seem there has also been an attack in Egypt. Those claiming responsibility have used similar wording to those claiming responsibility to the London bombing.

Blair's Address

Found here...

I'm just going to make a short statement to you on the terrible events that have happened in London earlier today. And I hope you understand that at the present time we're still trying to establish what has happened. There's a limit to what information I can give you. And I'll simply try and tell you the information as best I can at the moment.
It's reasonably clear there have been a series of terrorist attacks in London. There are, obviously, casualties, both people that have died and people seriously injured. And our thoughts and prayers, of course, are with the victims and their families.
It's my intention to leave the G8 within the next couple of hours and go down to London and get a report face to face with the police and the emergency services and the ministers that have been dealing with this, and then to return later this evening.
It is the will of all the leaders at the G8, however, that the meeting should continue in my absence, that we should continue to discuss the issues that we were going to discuss and reach the conclusions which we were going to reach.
Each of the countries around that table has some experience of the effects of terrorism. And all the leaders, as they will indicate a little bit later, share our complete resolution to defeat this terrorism.
It's particularly barbaric that this has happened on a day when people are meeting to try to help the problems of poverty in Africa and the long-term problems of climate change in the environment.
Just as it is reasonably clear that this is a terrorist attack, or a series of terrorist attacks, it's also reasonably clear that it is designed and aimed to coincide with the opening of the G8.
There will be time to talk later about this.
It's important, however, that those engaged in terrorism realize that our determination to defend our values and our way of life is greater than their determination to cause death and destruction to innocent people in a desire to impose extremism on the world.
Whatever they do, it is our determination that they will never succeed in destroying what we hold dear in this country and in other civilized nations throughout the world.
Thank you.

London Bombed III

By the way, that guy who made the comment on the bombings vs. the Nazi bombinc was Harris, Former CSIS Chief of Strategic Planning.
Canadians looking for information on relatives in London can call 613-996-8885 or 1-800-387-3124.
The police conference has just started. They are running through the specifics of the explosion. In the first bombing, 7 people died. In the second bombing, 21 confirmed dead. In the third bombing, 3 trains were involved and 5 are confirmed dead. In the 4th, the number of confirmed dead is unknown. This means at least 33 people are dead. There are 45 serious injuries and 300 minor injuries.
The police service has not specifically received statements from groups claiming responsibility, despite rumours.
The tube is down until tomorrow. The bus should be up tonight. King's Cross and Liverpool are closed. Victoria is closed due to a bomb threat. Londoner's should think about going home, and should plan carefully without rushing as it is likely to be busy tonight.
All trains will inspected as soon as possible.
Things will be slow for the next few days as criminal investigations are completed. In some areas, bus service will be limited or non-existent. In other areas, it will be full and slow.
They have moved on to a question session.

London Bombed II

CTV News is showing a repeat of Blair's address right now.
He's talking about Britain's determination to defeat terrorism, their determination not to succumb to extremism.
Previously, they interviewed some political/historical specialist. I did not catch his name, but he made and interesting point about the similarity of this bombing to the Nazi bombings in terms of the intended effects, where it took place (economic center of Britain) and so on.
According to this news brief, Martin did call Ottawa as soon as it happened. I sincerely hope he chooses to take action.
On CTV News they are showing a repeat of the address made by the mayor of London. His tone is similar to that of Blair's, not surprisingly.

London Bombed

The attack seems to have come from The Secret Organization of al-Qaeda in Europe," and were intended to coincide with the G8 Summit. The CTV website has a quote from the terrorists that I will not repeat... except for one part:
"The heroic mujahedeen carried out a blessed attack in London, and now Britain is burning with fear and terror, from north to south, east to west," the statement said.
These people don't know Britain.
This is Churchill's country.
This is a country reknowned for its unwavering stubbornness and intestinal fortitude. They are small but mighty in the truest sense of the phrase.
Tuning into CTV news on TV, it would seem that the TTC has also been put on alert as well as our airports. The death toll has been updated to 45. Our Prime Minister will be making an address relatively soon. I sincerely hope that he pledges to help Britain. It would be a shame too heavy to bear if he sits back and does nothing yet again. Many Canadians have ties to Britain (not the least of whom is myself). To abandon her in her time of need would show our nation to be entirely without honour.

I will be following this story for most of the day.

7/06/2005

Report from the Fraser Institute

I noticed that a number of Blogging Tories members had posts on a report put out by the Fraser Institute. I decided to have a read for myself. The report can be found here.

The paper is well written. If you are used to an academic, research based format, you should have no trouble with it at all. It is well documented, well footnoted and there are plenty of references and appendices for you to read.
I was left with a few questions, however. On page 8 there is a chart listing Liberal Payments, Liberal Donations, and the remaining three parties. The headings for the remaining three parties are not clear: are these payments or donations? I assume they are donations.
On page 8 and 9 there is a reference to a payment made by the RCMP to the Liberal Party. First, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP)... were charged $112,000... for seats accompanying the prime minister during the 2000 election campaign. These revenues were not recorded for the 1997 campaign, a notable omission.
It is an apparent conflict of interest for government agencies, especially those engaged in law enforcement, to pay a governing political party for services rendered during an election. This financial entanglement can impair perceptions of independence and due process that are essential to the proper functioning of those agencies.

Why is the 1997 campaing mentioned? Why did the RCMP pay for seats at the 2000 campaign? That it is a conflict of interest is certainly clear. Is there anything to indicate such behaviour might be illegal?
On page 2 it is noted that this report deals with 565 different agencies, whereas the Auditor General's report deals with only 71. What criteria determined the selection of these 565 agencies? One is left to assume that at least part of the criteria was where the agencies donated their money.

The closing comment is one I wholeheartedly agree with.
Finally, it must be recognized that waste in government is often a function of publicly set standards of behaviour. The electorate, through polls that reveal attitudes and by voting in elections, ultimately sets the parameters around acceptable behaviour. Pervasive and sustained misallocation of taxpayer funds is more likely to reoccur if such activities are socially tolerated. There is no reform of government practices that can create a culture that does not tolerate government waste. That is something that must be decided and declared by Canadians at large.

Church Discipline

Discipline by the church can often be a very uncomfortable subject to talk about. Many Christians feel that it is judgmental to call other Christians to repent after they have committed a serious sin. The arguments against discipline are usually:
that no one is perfect
get the moat out of your own eye
he who is without sin cast the first stone
God will change them
it's not up to us
it's hypocritical
it's interfering
and so on.
The arguments against discipline nearly always neglect the fact that it is required of us in the Bible. Instructions on how exactly discipline is to be performed can be found in I Corinthians 5, Galatians 6 and other places throughout the New Testament. It is not only to be done in love, but it is of critical importance for maintaining the spiritual health of the church.
In light of that, read this article.
Let me be frank. I am not overly concerned with the feelings of this MP. What his church is doing is absolutely right. As a professing Christian, he had absolutely no business whatsoever supporting Bill C-38. He should have made the moral choice and voted against the bill. For him now to be complaining to the media about his discipline is even more wrong, and it shows that he is a "stiff-necked and rebellious" person. He is deceived if he believes that his walk with God is of any genuine substance.
I honestly feel sorry for Christians like this. They have no idea that they are the goats spoken of in the parable. This man probably rejected God's Word a long time ago. Whether he is aware of it or not is a different question and one only he and God know the answer to. It is even more unfortunate that Christians like this are held up by the media as being the "good" ones. It's not really surprising, after all how would someone who isn't a Christian know the difference?
Nevertheless, I find it very said.

By the way, the Senate invoked closure on debate of Bill C-38 yesterday. They should be voting any time.

7/05/2005

How Can Anyone Not Love It?

How can anyone not love Rick Mercer's blog?
I nearly peed laughing reading this letter from the Liberals.

Money Problems

Stephen Taylor has an interesting post on the money troubles of the Liberal Party. According to Elections Canada, the party borrowed $35 million in loans during 2004. They also owe $75,000 to Bell Mobility, Delta Hotels and PriceWaterHouseCoopers.
$35 million for what?
Why do they have unpaid phone and hotel bills?
I would love to see an audit on where this money went and why.
Whatever happened to Paul Martin, Mr. Fiscally Responsible? Clearly the budget deal with the NDP was not his first monetary indiscretion.

Image

This link was featured at All things Canadian.
The idea of the blog is to pick the MP that you think is the best looking... except for Ken Dryden who would "have an unfair advantage because of his status as one of the best goaltenders of all time."
I don't know very much about female beauty, so I'll reserve my comments. But, who the heck picked the men? Yikes!! Is this what counts for hot looks in Parliament? Clearly, despite media proclamations to the contrary, people do not get elected based on looks.
Not a supermodel among them, I tell you.
Still, I appreciate the wit of people who think of stuff like this. It is pretty funny. They even went to the trouble of making the site bilingual... despite the fact that the Bloc (and NDP) are not represented. They're "not very hot."
What? Libby Davies isn't a babe?

An Eye Popper

Read the article...

I have no adequate comment, only a question: who the heck did these people ask?

Another Famous Canadian

Canadian journalist Rondi Adamson has joined the blogosphere. As a nerd who thinks a lot about the influence of the web on the rest of the world, I have to tell you, I think this is cool.

Big Corporations and Politics

Back in May I wrote this post about voting. I mentioned I guy my husband and I saw on the news who said he felt the Conservatives were "all about the big corporations." Then I pointed to an article showing which parties were supported by who. The Liberals had most of their support from big corporations.
Then, closer to the end of the month, I posted this tidbit on Democracy Watch Canada's report on party donations. Not only did it show that the Liberals had most of their support among the rich, it also showed that the Conservatives had most of their support among the average. (As an aside, by support I mean money).
In light of that information, consider this article in the National Post.
The new [donation] law -- a response in part to the abuses that came to light with the federal sponsorship scandal -- drastically restricted donations from businesses, trade unions and well-heeled individuals. Under the revised rules, corporations and unions can't give any money directly to national parties and are limited to a paltry $1,000 a year to local riding associations...
The effect is to force parties to rely on smaller grassroots donors -- and on cash from the public purse that is doled out on the basis of how many votes they win at the polls.

And who do you think has been hit the hardest? Surely the Liberals must be doing well, since they represent the "people of Canada." Surely Joe-Average-Guy must be putting his money where his.. err, rather Martin's, mouth is.
And yet...
The federal Liberals have turned out to be the biggest losers under new party financing rules designed to curb the political influence of major corporations and other wealthy donors. Figures released Monday by Elections Canada show the Grits raised $5.2 million from private-sector sources in 2004 -- less than half the $10.9 million raked in by the rival Conservatives...
The impact is obvious when the 2004 fundraising figures are compared with what went before. In 2003, as the Liberals moved from the leadership of Chretien to that of Paul Martin, they raised a hefty $24 million. Some $10 million of that came from the corporate sector. The same year the Canadian Alliance and the Progressive Conservatives, the two ancestors of the current Conservative Party of Canada, took in a combined $12.6 million. Roughly $2.4 million of that came from business.

It's important to notice that both parties did drop in the amount of money raised. However, what is critical is the amount of each drop. Whereas the Conservatives only dropped by about $1.7 million, the Liberals dropped by a whopping $18.8 million... a drop 11 times greater than the one experienced by the Conservatives.
And yet somehow polls tell us the Liberals are in the lead as far as public support goes. I have to wonder exactly how that works.

Get Out of Jail Free...

Karla Homolka was released from prison yesterday. It would appear that she has decided to settle down in Quebec. The article only briefly mentions something that I heard on the radio yesterday: that Homolka is afraid of being hunted down by citizens after her release. The article also does not mention at all that, as of yesterday, she was still seeking a media ban. She does not want her whereabouts reported on.
How is it that our justice system allows someone to be released at all after they have tortured and murdered three minors? It is incredibly perverse.

7/02/2005

Vain? Us?

Read the article...
This article made me laugh. After spending many years holding the unfounded belief that American's believe themselves to be "better," the article above points out that not only is this untrue, but we 'umble Canadians may be the very thing we hate.
Insufferably narcissistic.
"Canadians stand out for their nearly universal belief (94 per cent) that other nations have a positive view of Canada,"
94%??
Holy cow!!!
The US only weighed in at 26%!
Are we honestly prancing about thinking "Heeey! Everybody likes us?" Apparently, we are!
"It is a paradox of the Canadian psyche that we're incredibly proud of our humility," ... "we stick the Maple Leaf pins all over our clothes, so people know. We pride ourselves on not being rude and pushy, on being polite ... we're almost being pushy about the fact that we're not being pushy."
With irony like this, who needs satire?

A Dishonourable Mention

After reading the following conversation posted at Rabble.ca, I have decided to remove their link from my list.
People are entitled to their opinion, no matter how bigoted or wrong.
I don't have to support it or link to it.

7/01/2005

Another Definition of Success

The other day I posted on Martin calling this past Parliamentary term a "success." Canadianna has an interesting post containing six points why it should be considered a success. Although I define success differently, based on what she has said I have to agree that in this certain light the Liberals were successful. The most telling comment is this one:
...blame anyone you want, but it was you and me. We acquiesced as we watched a government ignore the will of the majority of the House, and decide to stay on anyway. There were mild protestations of a few, familiar with parliamentary custom and procedure. Their observations barely sparked debate beyond conservative blogs. There was no country-wide outrage. There were no protests. There were no riots in the street. There was public questioning of the Conservative leadership. There were admonitions about the 'angry Stephen Harper' and the 'impatience' of the opposition, and 'power hungry Conservatives.' The Liberals stole parliament, and most people seem to have decided it belonged to them anyway.
This is so true and so unfortunate. I have posted on it before on why there were no protests. Now, I don't know how to arrange such things, but I certainly would have attended. We live in a country with so much freedom, but we haven't taken advantage of it. People apparently did not want an election too close to the summer. This has never made sense to me. Why wouldn't anyone want to exercise their democratic rights? It is us, the Canadian people, who handed the Liberals their "success."
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