Loving Hating the "BC Free Press" Website

These folks are a riot.

In a March 2004 story on their website, I found this darling line, “BC is once again plunged into darkness by the NDP. They are fueled by a motivation not uncommon to terrorists – the fanatical belief they occupy a higher moral ground than everyone else.”

I think by definition the political party at the opposite end of the spectrum from where you are is horrible, its ideology is flawed, they have a warped sense of human nature, and their values are inadequate. But I must say, regardles of whether the NDP does or does not actually believe they are morally superior to everyone else, if they were, they aren’t therefore terrorists. Moral superiority may be a necessary condition for being a terrorist, but it is far from sufficient.

Silly rhetoric like this is dangerous. It must be stopped. As much as I abhor, for example, Gordon Campbell’s neocon philosophy as morally lacking and societally toxic, he is far from a terrorist just because his morality leads him to enact neocon society-demeaning policy.

And I don’t want to even get into the astoundingly sad comparison that the NDP beliefs are “fanatical” in any way remotely like suicide bombers or hijackers.

The email address of the unnamed editor of that website is editor@bcfreepress.bc.ca. Let “them” know if you think they’re being irresponsible. And maybe suggest that they put their actual names on their site if they wish to display any integrity or be seen as credible.

Here’s the whole article [with context] in case it evaporates off their website. It seems to have no permanent weblink. And as of today, none of their 2004 content is copyrighted. Whoops.

NDP READY TO PLUNGE B.C. BACK INTO DARKNESS

BC FREE PRESS, March 2004 – It’s a toss-up. In recent memory, which is the sleaziest bunch to run a government? The federal Liberals or B.C.’s NDP? It depends how you define sleazy.

Jean Chretien’s/Paul Martin’s Liberals have probably pork-barreled more money to friends and insiders than all of Canada’s combined provincial governments. The extent of federal corruption is enormous, and it will continue until Canadians decide to chance the devil they don’t know rather than the devil they’re sick of.

Previous NDP governments in BC were also very adept at pork-barreling and corruption, including cover-ups like the NCHS Bingo scandal where charities and nuns were ripped off.

But the NDP also bring a different kind of sleaze, best represented by Joy MacPhail’s recent accusations against Liberal MLA Richard Stewart. These accusations were not spelled out, but were implied. They are of a highly personal nature, and have little or nothing to do with the running of government.

This is the kind of sleazy politics the NDP excel in. Slash and burn. It’s not about policy or public business. It’s about innuendo, speculation, rumour – character assassination. Joy MacPhail is a master at it – ruthless dissection of her opponent regardless of the harm to her target or her target’s family. If the NDP’s new Leader Carole James had any leadership qualities, she would have gone public with an apology and a statement that her party will not engage in that brand of politics. But instead, James continues to hide in the shadows like a jackal waiting to feed on wounded prey.

Only after feeling the heat from an appalled public and a threat of a lawsuit from Stewart, did MacPhail back off, offering a weak apology for her accusations. But not before enormous damage was done. Egged on by MacPhail, former Liberal MLA Elayne Brenzinger, now an independent, has also launched an attack on Stewart. Stewart is outraged and has promised to defend himself in the courts.

In the meantime, BC is once again plunged into darkness by the NDP. They are fueled by a motivation not uncommon to terrorists – the fanatical belief they occupy a higher moral ground than everyone else.

Take no prisoners. The end justifies the means – any means.

B.C. was an economic pariah for a decade under the previous NDP government. Joy MacPhail, Jenny Kwan, and Carole James are ready to send us back.

Finis

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Paul Martin Will Be in No Rush for a New Election

Assuming the numbers hold and the NDP can supply support to a marginal Liberal minority government, I ponder how desperate Martin will be to buy off more votes to gain 25+ more seats for the Liberals. Not very.

With the only realistic threat to an eventual Liberal government being the Conservatives [about 60 seats away from a majority], Martin does not need to rush into a new election.

From a progressive’s point of view, his ability to wait is a wonderful thing. The minority government itself better reflects the reality that the first-past-the-post electoral system is maimed and needing retirement. Jack Layton’s well-founded desire for a national referendum on proportional representation will add to the obviousness for Canadians that we need an electoral alternative.

Paul Martin’s email address is [still] pm@pm.gc.ca

Fair Vote Canada’s website is still http://FairVoteCanada.org

Let’s get busy!

Finis

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Stephen Harper is Gordon Campbell in Paul Martin Clothing; Paul Martin is Gordon Campbell in Jack Layton Clothing

Joe Clark was right to describe Stephen Harper as dangerous. He’s a neocon who wishes to undermine Canadian political sovereignty for harmonization with the United States and asserting economic freedoms over political democracy, thereby turning citizens into consumers. He supports the Washington Consensus of economics over democracy, including the 4 Horsemen of Structural Adjustment: Free Trade, Privatization, Deregulation and Foreign Direct Investment. He will do to Canada what Gordon Campbell has done to BC and what Klein and Harris perpetrated on Alberta and Ontario. But he pretends to be Paul Martin-ish in his concern for communities and “Canada”.

Paul Martin is no better. As a neocon finance minister for most of the last decade he cut social services, downloaded expenses to provinces and municipalities by reducing transfer payments and dropped the Red Book commitment to address child poverty. Being a sweatshop-steamship owning millionaire globalization advocate doesn’t help his likelihood of being a true man of social and economic compassion. He dresses himself up as one concerned for social good, but his track record is more like Stephen Harper’s plan than Jack Layton’s. Likely, if it weren’t for more social and economic centrists in the Liberal caucus, Martin would have gotten away with far more neocon bullshit. An election mandate for him would be as disasterous as for Harper. And while Martin tried to scare everyone during the English debate last week that Harper wouldn’t solve hospital waiting lists, the rest of the candidates who stated that Martin himself created that problem were quite accurate.

NDP or Greens or any ideologically progressive party. They are the only sound alternative. That and pushing for proportional representation in provincial and federal legislatures in the next election are our only real hope.

Finis

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More Beheadings

Well, I was seriously hoping to be terribly wrong about suggesting the beheadings wouldn’t stop at only one.

The PR value seems too alluring to refrain from this sustained terror campaign…because that’s what it is: terrorism. You don’t need to crash planes to terrorize a society.

Finis

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Who ISN’T Iraq’s New Interim President?

Perhaps it’s a function of Al-Jezeera being Al-Jezeera, or perhaps it’s just a diction or a translation issue, but in today’s Al-Jezeera story about who actually is the Iraqi interim president–Sunni Muslim tribal chief Ghazi al-Yawir, it’s instructive to note two items about w.Caesar’s reputed choice–Adnan Pachachi.

The first point is the use of the word “accused”: “In a press conference, Pachachi explained that he declined the offer of the post of Iraq’s interim president after he was accused of being the candidate of the United States.” [my emphasis] It would be interesting to see if in the original press conference he actually gave off the vibe that such an accusation felt like he was charged with knocking over a 7-11. That’s how it reads in English anyway.

Pachachi continued, “It is a lie…that the Coalition Provisional Authority wanted to impose me as president.” [my emphasis again] “Impose” sure sounds heavy-handed. So maybe Pachachi was wise to avoid appearing to be w.Caesar’s lapdog in an occupied country that now actually has a slightly improved chance of being authentically self-determining now that there’s a Sunni President along with a Kurd and a Shia holding vice-president posts in the new federalism.

Another report provides some background about why Pachachi–who is 81 years old–may be avoiding the job: “Pachachi came from a family that produced several top politicians over the past 50 years but has no power base in Iraq after more than 30 years in exile in the United Arab Emirates. His ties to the Americans did not help his standing among Iraqis frustrated by and distrustful of the occupation.”

But then again, Pachachi was critical of w.Caesar’s Fallujah debacle. Maybe he should have kept his mouth shut on that one.

Not Adnan Pachachi:

Finis

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Getting Rid of the Toxicity in the White House

In preaching to the converted, or even w.Caesar supporters, it’s always nice to have a clever piece of flash animation to reflect how toxic the White House occupant is.

Take a peek: http://flash.bushrecall.org/

Finis

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Dasani Tap Water and Advertisements of Quality

I like water. A lot. I mean I really really like it. It tastes good. It keeps me alive. It’s, dare I say, a human right, not to be commercialized or commodified so only those who earn enough money can buy it, not like the 3 billion or so people who live on less than a dollar a day.

This is why I don’t like Dasani water. In part I don’t like it because Coca-Cola owns it. But I also don’t like it for the essence of it: privatized water. I’m not a fan.

Across the street is a bus stop with a large Dasani ad plastered on it. There’s a delicious looking huge bottle of Dasani on the ad with some text, which includes this:

“It takes 14,000 years to filter water. (Who’s got time for that?)”

Thankfully, Dasani does. They serve us. They provide us with water, the building block of life.

Unless, of course, you lived in England a few months ago. The following comes from an Alternet.org story from March 22, 2004, referencing another story in the Independent newspaper.

“The story begins with the debut of Dasani bottled water in the U.K. two weeks ago, accompanied by a massive Coke PR push labeling it “as pure as bottled water gets.” Shortly thereafter, it was revealed that Coke’s southeast London bottling plant was using tap water already renowned for its purity and marking up the price by some 300,000 percent.”

Apparently, Dasani really doesn’t seem to have the time to wait 14,000 years or long enough to do whatever magic they do to their water to justify selling it at a premium. And I know the England tap water incident is likely an anomaly, but seeing the bus ad just made me a bit sick.

Finis

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Beheadings

Right now, proportional responses aside [because they don’t seem to fit much anymore when dealing with w.Caesar’s regime], my only question is why would revenge killings just stop at one?

I suspect one act of revenge will not be the end of it.

Rumsfeld’s dismissive, insulting, condescending minimization of his knowledge of American torture games while testifying before the Senate only fuels the will to vengeance.

Finis

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The Saudis, oil, and re-electing w.Caesar

Saudis urge OPEC to hike oil output: Oil minister seeks 1.5-million-barrel-a-day rise

So I saw Bob Woodward talking with Mike Wallace on 60 Minutes a few weeks ago. Of the many astounding things they discussed about w.Caesar, one stuck in my mind: how w.Caesar’s buddy, Saudi ambassador to the USA, Prince Bandar [good friend of the Bush family for 3 decades], would ensure the Saudis increased the daily output of oil in time to reduce gas prices to spur the economy leading up to the US presidential election in November 2004.

It will be fascinating to watch the state of gas prices over the next 6 months, especially if the 1.5+ million barrels/day increase happens.

God bless America, and their Saudi financiers. What 9/11 hijackers? Huh?

[[[addendum 05.11.04: this Tom Toles cartoon: ]]]

Finis

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George Monbiot’s Career Advice for Idealistic Journalists and Those Who Want to Shake the World

Monbiot‘s pretty astounding.

As I was developing the whole Politics vein of dgiVista.org, I came across this Monbiot piece about how to be idealistic, free and really really useful in the world. When unsure about the direction I’ve been taking with this [whole] site [actually], I serendipitously read this piece.

The result? What you see here. And what you’ll see in the future.

Finis

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De-Spinning the Political and Re-Spinning it for Social, Economic and Political Justice