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Dumbest excuse put forth to defend Conservative 'fake lake'?

So far, that honour appears to go to cabinet minister Peter Kent:

Peter Kent, junior foreign affairs minister and former TV anchorman, blamed the media for the fake lake in Toronto, accusing television networks of using make believe backgrounds for their stand ups and interviews. “Every host country provides a media facility and . . . for a less cynical international media this will probably prove to be a benefit,” Kent said.

So it’s the media’s fault for the fake lake? Did they request the government build them a suitable background? Am I missing something here?

On a slightly related topic, a nice slam here from a couple of Toronto […]

What do you do with money saved from funding cuts to women's groups & arts/culture?

Well, if you’re the Conservative government, you apparently use some of it to build a fake lake for the G8/G20 conference, and giving reporters special edition Blackberries. From Greg Weston:

Canadian and international journalists covering the G8 summit in Muskoka later this month will be able to file their reports from the leisurely comfort of a cottage dock, their feet dangling in the water, surrounded by the stunning sights and sounds of the fabled Ontario resort country three hours north of Toronto. The only catch is they won’t be anywhere near Muskoka. Instead, the federal government is shelling out millions of dollars to re-create cottage country — complete with a […]

Very pleased to see Ignatieff's stance on coalitions clarified.

..and that he’s more or less taking the stance I’ve been advocating that he and the Liberal leadership should be taking:

Michael Ignatieff says coalition governments are “perfectly legitimate” and he’d be prepared to lead one if that’s the hand Canadian voters deal him in the next election. But the Liberal leader says it would be disrespectful to voters and damaging to his party to try to strike any deals with the NDP before voters have spoken…”Co-operation between parties to produce political and electoral stability is not illegitimate. It’s never been illegitimate, it’s part of our system,” he said, noting that coalitions have been formed in parliamentary democracies around the […]

'Steamboat Tony'

That’s what Liberal MP Dominic LeBlanc called Industry Minister Tony Clement yesterday in QP. The reason: Tony has decided to take a 400 000 $ portion of the 1 billion $ price-tag it’s going to cost to host this G8/G20 summit and spend it on restoring a steamboat in his riding, named the “Bigwin” ironically enough:

That’s a photo of the Bigwin, which Tony wants to restore with G8/G20 taxpayer-funded expenditures. So, what’s the big deal? 400 000$ is chump change out of a 1 billion $ budget, right? Well, how about the fact that this restoration has nothing even to do with the G8/G20 summit, as reported by […]

Harper talking domestic politics (trash) on his world tour.

No surprise that Harper would do so; he’s done it before where he talks about some aspect of domestic politics while he’s abroad. I guess he feels that everyone is watching his trip, so they’ll be paying more attention. Today, in the UK, the talk arose of coalition government there, and the parallels between that scenario and what could play out here.

Harper was today asked about coalition governments; specifically about the parallels between what has happened in the UK, withe the recent coalition government agreement with the Liberal Democrats and the Conservative Party, and what could occur in Canada. His answer was this: “Losers don’t get to form […]

Standing up for Canada?

For Harper and the Conservatives on copyright issues, it would appear not so much, if this report is to be believed:

According to Austin, the decision to introduce U.S.-style DMCA rules in Canada in 2007 was strictly a political decision, the result of pressure from the Prime Minister’s Office desire to meet U.S. demands. She states “the Prime Minister’s Office’s position was, move quickly, satisfy the United States.” When Bernier and then-Canadian Heritage Minister Bev Oda protested, the PMO replied “we don’t care what you do, as long as the U.S. is satisfied.”

Professor Geist adds: “it would appear that the PMO’s decision to side with Canadian Heritage Minister James […]

'Coalition' seems to be the summer topic in Canada.

Blame the UK, its electorate, and its parties for that being the case, I guess :).

In brief, and to expand on other musings on what I think the Liberal Party should or shouldn’t be saying, I find it silly that some in the party would be flatly dismissing scenarios that may or may not occur. No one in the UK pre-election advocated an open coalition within any of the parties; all wanted to win outright. But, once the chips fell as they did, they had to work with the options they had.

To reject something outright is limiting one’s options rather unnecessarily and paints one into a corner […]

Don’t throw the Conservatives a life jacket on copyright bill

Apparently, Industry Minister Tony Clement realizes he and the Conservative government are going to get a rough ride on their 2nd attempt at coming up with a new Copyright Bill, and he’s literally begging the opposition parties to help him and the government pass this.

If the new copyright bill is as draconian as it’s rumoured to be, there’s no way the opposition parties – particularly the Liberals – should aid the Conservatives passing this bill. There will be probably another massive public campaign as there was last time the Conservatives tried to modify copyright law, and the opposition parties should stand out of the way and let the Conservatives […]

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