No more Choke-Rod

It took a while, but after a video review they see that A-Rod's first ever World Series home run came today vs. Philly, and closed the game to a 3-2 Philadelphia lead.

Not surprisingly, A-Rod's first ever WS homer was pretty much the narrowest margin in homerun history: if the ball hit the glass fence its a double. But the ball instead hit the videocamera above that fence, which is off the field and is a home run.

Congrats, Alex.


I was an Alberta Separatist before being an Alberta Separatist was cool

Werner Patels examines how Alberta Separatism will rise again with climate change as the motivation.

I said it once I'll say it again, who needs an excuse?


Dumbass letter in today's Edmonton SUN , Part 2

Republican blogger Adam Brickley, credited with launching Sarah Palin's vice-presidential run, compares Wild-rose Alliance Leader Danielle Smith with Palin. Mr. Brickley, do you know if Danielle Smith can also see Alaska from her house?

Anthony Owusu

Ha ha, ha ha, ha ha...oh, hold on there Tony.

What's that about Palin seeing things "from her house"? You, uh, do know she never said it.

Check out Part 1!

Dumbass letter in today's Edmonton SUN , Part 1

Premier Ed Stelmach has finally revealed his true colours regarding his putdown of NDP Leader Brian Mason during question period. He may have little regard for the opposition, as they seem to get him flustered, and he can't come up with snappy answers, resulting in the childish table pounding we often see. Yes, Mason was a bus driver. So are countless other citizens of this fair country, working their tails off to help people. You may be premier, but remember, you're just a farmer. Does that make you less a person or not as smart as someone in, say, the nursing profession? Mason has served this city and province for years, with distinction. You owe Mason and all the other hard-working transit people in this country an apology. Let's hope that the next leader has a little more class.

Gary Hill
MLA Brian Mason has finally revealed his true colours regarding his putdown of Premier Ed Stelmach during media scrums. He may have little regard for the governemtn, as they seem to get him flustered, and he can't come up with sound policy that wouldn't get him shot in rural Alberta, resulting in the childish table pounding we often see. Yes, Stelmach was a farmer. So are countless other citizens of this fair country, working their tails off to help people. You may be an NDP bigshot, but remember, you're just a bus driver. Does that make you less a person or not as smart as someone in, say, the nursing profession? Stelmach has served this Vegreville and this province for years, with distinction. You owe Stelmach and all the other hard-working farmers in this country an apology. Let's hope that the next leader has a little more class.

See how easy this is!

Check out Part 2!


BT Flu Shots

This morning on Breakfast Television they had an angry email about a story showing the dark side of the flu shot.

Say what? Is there anybody so silly as to think the media wouldn't be completely assaulted if CityTV didn't let the ad air? Sometimes you can't win with these people.

Fine way to end the season

Today is the opening day of the final major Women's Tennis Sony Ericsson WTA Tour event of the season: Sony Ericsson Championships - Doha 2009
(there's another smaller year-end tournament in Bali starting November 4th)

You can watch it streaming here. Some coverage may pop up on this blog but don't count on it.

Going into Doha, here are the current rankings (first 100):
1 Williams, Serena
2 Safina, Dinara
3 Kuznetsova, Svetlana
4 Williams, Venus
5 Dementieva, Elena
6 Wozniacki, Caroline
7 Zvonareva, Vera
8 Azarenka, Victoria
9 Jankovic, Jelena
10 Radwanska, Agnieszka
11 Bartoli, Marion
12 Pennetta, Flavia
13 Stosur, Samantha
14 Ivanovic, Ana
15 Sharapova, Maria
16 Li, Na
17 Petrova, Nadia
18 Clijsters, Kim
19 Razzano, Virginie
20 Wickmayer, Yanina
21 Mauresmo, Amelie
22 Vesnina, Elena
23 Hantuchova, Daniela
24 Schiavone, Francesca
25 Cibulkova, Dominika
26 Medina Garrigues, Anabel
27 Kleybanova, Alisa
28 Lisicki, Sabine
29 Bondarenko, Kateryna
30 Pavlyuchenkova, Anastasia
31 Wozniak, Aleksandra
32 Suarez Navarro, Carla
33 Dulko, Gisela
34 Martinez Sanchez, Maria Jose
35 Zheng, Jie
36 Bondarenko, Alona
37 Benesova, Iveta
38 Peer, Shahar
39 Cirstea, Sorana
40 Czink, Melinda
41 Safarova, Lucie
42 Peng, Shuai
43 Rezai, Aravane
44 Cornet, Alize
45 Rybarikova, Magdalena
46 Szavay, Agnes
47 Schnyder, Patty
48 Oudin, Melanie
49 Errani, Sara
50 Shvedova, Yaroslava
51 Dushevina, Vera
52 Dulgheru, Alexandra
53 Bammer, Sybille
54 Kvitova, Petra
55 Petkovic, Andrea
56 Kanepi, Kaia
57 Makarova, Ekaterina
58 Mirza, Sania
59 Vinci, Roberta
60 Garbin, Tathiana
61 Kirilenko, Maria
62 Dokic, Jelena
63 Groenefeld, Anna-lena
64 Coin, Julie
65 Chakvetadze, Anna
66 Malek, Tatjana
67 Govortsova, Olga
68 Radwanska, Urszula
69 Hradecka, Lucie
70 Bacsinszky, Timea
71 Olaru, Ioana Raluca
72 Hercog, Polona
73 Brianti, Alberta
74 Voegele, Stefanie
75 Morita, Ayumi
76 Goerges, Julia
77 Craybas, Jill
78 King, Vania
79 Keothavong, Anne
80 Sevastova, Anastasija
81 Barrois, Kristina
82 Martic, Petra
83 Groth, Jarmila
84 Niculescu, Monica
85 Flipkens, Kirsten
86 Amanmuradova, Akgul
87 Zahlavova Strycova, Barbora
88 Parra Santonja, Arantxa
89 Gallovits, Edina
90 Kutuzova, Viktoriya
91 Mayr, Patricia
92 O'brien, Katie
93 Baltacha, Elena
94 Date Krumm, Kimiko
95 Kerber, Angelique
96 Sprem, Karolina
97 Voskoboeva, Galina
98 Yakimova, Anastasiya
99 Camerin, Maria Elena
100 Kudryavtseva, Alla


"We can't fly our Birds of Prey and eat as much Rokeg Blood Pie as we want and keep our Great Houses on 72 degrees at all times"


If only Lursa and B’Ehtor had selected a platform of hope and change, the result might have been different.

Eye of Polyphemus links Barack Obama to Toral, the alleged son of Duras.

Of possible additional parallels, we're not sure where Toral was born either!

'Tis a shame

Today I was saying at work my new favourite numbers in the world are 0-7-1.

It looks like 0-8-1 (and even 0-7-2) are out of the picture, as with 15:07 left in the 3rd period the Maple Leafs are leading Anaheim 4-2. Unless Anaheim can remember who the hell they are playing, Toronto is going to get its first win of the season and end how funny this joke is.

At this point its like the Blue Jays' 10-game losing streak: a win won't help them much (moreso in this case as Toronto gave up their draft pick to Boston in the offseason), and a loss might as well just keep them trying for losing in an historically famous manner.

Update, 11:13pm: They did, indeed, win. Begin planning the parade route, deluded Make-Me-Laugh fans!

You can't teach an old C new tricks

Is Edmonton Oilers Centre Mike Comrie turning into a new incarnation of Chris Pronger (who was himself a more-popular sequel to the original Mike Comrie)?

From @MicheRyder's Twitter feed:

Stayed tuned.... Breaking comrie news...spotted canoodling with a blonde that was not hilary.

I had heard about this other blonde, then I saw them together...

Hilary would of course be Hilary Duff, the superstar singer that Comrie is somehow dating. Canoodling would be called necking, for those who need a translation.

If true (note Mike was "out with the flu" last night), we could have yet another problem with puckbunnies causing perfectly capable hockey players to be chased out of town. Of course, Montreal never has this problem. What's with the superstar infidelities anyways? Keep it in your pants or your girlfriend's irresistable moist snatch, Mikey-boy.

Movie A comes out, and then Movie B is a far more successful sequel to Movie A. Then Movie C comes along as a remake of Movie B. This has happened before somewhere, hasn't it? Its on the edge of my brain but I can't think of it.

"We both got fired (from Jenifur) on exactly the same day."

In keeping with the odd tendency lately to do Hard Core Logo tribute videos with non-punk songs, here's the latest offering to the sounds of Modest Mouse:


Armchair quarterbacking

If you've watched the Sportsnet UFC-highligh music video that was just on, you've heard this song:

Tonight on Smallville...

If you enjoyed Victoria (aka Roulette), you'll also enjoy this photo of actress Steph Song, one of FHM's hottest women in the world 2004:

The fat guy with the leather jacket and sawed off shotgun says there are no motorcycle gangs operating in our city.

You may have heard that the swine flu vaccination program is actually a cover for a government plan to kill people.

Or it’s just a scheme to fatten the wallets of pharmaceutical companies.

Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer, has heard many conspiracy theories and rumours. It’s not making his mission of persuading people to get the H1N1 vaccine any easier.

"There are certain segments of society that don’t trust the government," he said Thursday. "It’s all a conspiracy to depopulate the world, that it’s sponsored by organized crime."

As the province gears up for its immunization program next week, he hopes common sense will prevail over the Internet fringe element.
Now usually "internet fringe element" is code for Third Edge of the Sword but in this case its quite clear that Dr. Strang is right. While there may be some valid reasons for a person not to get the vaccine, that's a matter for individual decisions. I for one am unlikely to go for it, I don't see much need. It is also, of course, clear that while there may be shady things governments and Big Pharma can get up to, any fool can see that the Swine Flu vaccination program was brought in by governments with at least the noble goals of reducing the cases of flu in the interest of maintaining public health.

Now there are some less-than-desirable decisions being made. Friday evening President Monkey declared a state of national Swine Flu emergency throughout the United States, and its pretty clear as well such a declaration is a serious overkill. While 1 in 5 children in America "had symptoms of H1N1" as the article states, there's nothing saying that they have H1N1, just that they seem to have the flu. 20% of children getting the flu during flu season just isn't the disaster scenario you would expect. To date most of the comments are about incompetance over Obama's government-run healthcare not getting enough vaccine and examining its implications if the undesirable public option is ever passed.

However, the conspiracy minded could easily see some issues here. Already some people are being forced to take the flu vaccine (though some technical malfunctions make this statement untrue). Combine a mandatory 'vaccination' with what a state of emergency empowers governments to do and you can see how conspiracy theories can form. This is what Dr. Strang was trying to discount, and I believe strongly there is no government conspiracy.

On the other hand, if you do believe there's a government conspiracy to force people to receive mystery injections under the auspices of "national health crisis", its hard to believe this will change anybody's mind. Why? Dr. Robert Strang is Nova Scotia’s chief medical officer. In the event of any government conspiracy, he's the first person the conspiracy recruits (or plants). Basically the man who would be the lynchpin of any conspiracy denies the conspiracy exists. Sorry Dr. Strang but you are pissing into the wind here.

Wait, hold the phone here

Did nobody in Quebec City, where they have had Google Street View since October 7th, realize they had it until last Wednesday?

Since Wednesday is the frenzy in Quebec. Everywhere on the web, Facebook and Twitter, people wonder if they recognize their home, their apartment on Google street wiew is now available.
Its hard to tell since the article looks like a lousy translation from the French original, but it seems that in Quebec City nobody was smart enough to notice that every major media outlet in the country (including my Twitter feed which broke the story, and my blog in the post listed above) was talking about Quebec City being live on Google Street View.

Its not surprising. Most of them probably don't know where B.C. is, either. Then again, Squamish, B.C. was unaware of it until sometime last week too. Do they know there's a province called Quebec?


" Democracy is not being, it is becoming. It is easily lost, but never finally won."

Word comes today about the ongoing crisis in Afghanistan:

WASHINGTON, Oct 24 (Reuters) - Abdullah Abdullah, Afghan President Hamid Karzai's rival in next month's run-off election, said he would not join Karzai's government if the incumbent won.

Asked in a CNN interview about comments by Karzai that he would welcome his rival in his government, Abdullah said he had "absolutely no interest in such a scenario."

Abdullah, a former foreign minister, said his intention in seeking the presidency was to bring change to the impoverished country, not to be "part of the same deteriorating situation."

So much for that idea. As Afghanistan desends into a possible coup and a constitutional crisis the young democracy doesn't need, Abdullah vows he will have nothing to do with any sort of power-sharing agreement that would give both men a role in the government of Afghanistan.

Without this power-sharing agreement, what will have to happen instead is a costly runoff election that will likely not decide anything and leave the country in the same perilous state it is in today.

Okay, you'd think that Afghanistan would have maybe learned something from the mature western democracies that have been operating militarily in the country since 2001. The Government of Canada is doing its best to try and build democratic institutions and a culture of smooth power transitions that are key to a successful and peaceful Afghanistan. Meanwhile, the country is falling into tribal barbarism and uncertainty over who the leader will be and who's in bed with whom.

But wait, are we sure this is the way the narrative actually reads? Maybe the Afghanis did learn from Canada. We also had a man in opposition vowing that he under no circumstances would form a coalition government. What happened? About 45 minutes after the election the same Stephane Dion tried to form a coalition government.

Meanwhile our buddy Abdullah also "said his intention in seeking the presidency was to bring change to the impoverished country, not to be 'part of the same deteriorating situation.'" Again, this is directly out of the Michael Ignatieff playbooks circa August 2009. You remember... "Mr. Harper your time is up and all that jazz. Now only 10 weeks later its a different tune... again.

Afghanistan might have to hold a runoff election to abate a constitutional crisis? Dude, we've had two of those in the last three years. With a few minor yet significant details changed, the Afghan situation and the Canadian situation have a lot in common. Just look at what I wrote above:
Without this power-sharing agreement, what will have to happen instead is a costly runoff election that will likely not decide anything and leave the country in the same perilous state it is in today.
Doesn't that aptly describe how Canada has been every since Iggy talked big about forcing another election?

I'm not saying Afghanistan is a mature democracy like Canada's or America's yet, but if you're watching recent politcal events over there and shaking your head perhaps you should grab the nearest mirror.

You could hear a pin drop....

Naturally none of these stories are true, but they were emailed to me today. After reading them all I had an immediate response that you will read at the bottom of the last one:

Subject: You could hear a pin drop

This one is definitely a "read to the end" one.

In France, at a fairly large conference, Steven Harper was asked by a French cabinet minister if Canadian involvement in Afghanistan was just an example of Empire building.

He answered by saying, 'Over the years, Canada has sent many of its fine young men and women into great peril to fight for freedom beyond our borders. The only amount of land we have ever asked for in return is eough to bury those that did not return.'

You could have heard a pin drop.


There was a conference in France where a number of international engineers were taking part, including French and American. During a break, one of the French engineers came back into the room saying 'Have you heard the dumb stunt the United States has done? They have sent an aircraft carrier to Indonesia to help the Tsunami victims. What do they intend to do, bomb them?'

A Boeing engineer stood up and replied quietly, 'Our Carriers have three hospitals on board that can treat several hundred people; they are nuclear powered and can supply emergency electrical power to shore facilities; they have three cafeterias with the capacity to feed 3,000 people three meals a day; they can produce several thousand gallons of fresh water from sea water each day and they carry half a dozen helicopters for use in transporting victims and injured to and from their flight deck. We have eleven such ships, how many does France have?'

You could have heard a pin drop.


A Canadian Admiral was attending a naval conference that included Admirals from the Canadian, U.S., English, Australian and French Navies. At a cocktail reception, he found himself standing with a large group of Officers that included personnel from most of those countries. Everyone was chatting away in English as they sipped their drinks but a
French Admiral suddenly complained that, whereas Europeans learn many languages, North Americans generally learn only English. He then asked, 'Why is it that we always have to speak English in these conferences rather than speaking French?'

Without hesitating, the Canadian Admiral replied 'Maybe it's because the Brits, Canadians, Aussies and Americans arranged it so you wouldn't have to speak German.'

You could have heard a pin drop.


Robert Whiting, an elderly Canadian gentleman of 83, arrived in Paris by plane. At French Customs, he took a few minutes to locate his passport in his carry on.
'You have been to France before, monsieur?' the customs officer asked sarcastically.
Mr. Whiting admitted that he had been to France previously.
The official replied 'then you should know enough to have your passport ready.'
The Canadian said, 'The last time I was here, I didn't have to show it.'
'Impossible. Canadians always have to show passports on arrival in France!'
The Canadian senior gave the Frenchman a long hard look. Then he quietly explained, 'Well, when I came ashore on D-Day in 1944 to help liberate this country, I couldn't find a single Frenchmen to show a passport to.'

You could have heard a pin drop.
We've got to stop holding conferences in France

Eight kelikams

Eminem's "Without Me".. in Klingon.


George W. Bush event review, Edmonton Alberta's Shaw Conference Centre, Tuesday October 20, 2009

First off Mr. President, welcome back to Alberta. (wait for applause)

My question is about a disturbing political trend that we started but has now taken root south of the border: regionalism as a weapon against political candidates. Throughout the 90s the Reform Party was dismissed as "hicks from Alberta". You have been dismissed as a "hick from Texas", your predecessor was a "hick from Arkansas", and Sarah Palin is "a hick from Alaska". We also see this when your successor's Chicago roots being evidence that he must be corrupt. Do you see an escalation or a reduction in this sort of area of attack, and if its only going to get worse how can people from non-traditional regions escape sterotyping and bigotry?

The above was going to be my question for George W. Bush. If questions had to be kept under a certain length, I had a backup question:
Sir, recently President Obama invited a Cambridge police office and a Cambridge professor to the White House to publicly end a tense situation. Since we know you don't drink beer anymore, if you had hosted these men what would you have served them instead?

As anybody who had attended the show is aware, there was no question and answer session, only a conversation with Kelly Hrudey. While I understand that giving a bunch of these "WAHT ABUOT YUOR LEIS MISTRE PRSEDINT" morons a microphone wouldn't have been beneficial, it would have been nice to actually talk with him. As most people walking out of the Shaw were saying, having a discussion with President Bush about matters of politics would be an excellent evening indeed. He has a lot of rare insight that the previous and successive Presidents would be sorely lacking.

The evening opened up with a little metal detectoring, which leads me to a discussion about silliness: the 5pm show was delayed because they couldn't get everybody into the venue before 5pm. Only two of the three banks of metal detectors had been in use, and if right at 4pm they had properly been shuffling people in ASAP then the lineup issues wouldn't have been as pronounced. I was told "no cameras" by Shaw staff earlier in the day, yet security let cameras in. There was also a mandatory coat check that was $2 and would have been nice to know. Once inside though, far from the annoying protestors we were able to have a couple of drinks. No good beer, though. It's a shame Shaw couldn't get some good American beers for a good American President. (Sam Adams comes to mind, since Texas microbrews are not available in Alberta to the best of my knowledge). Since George W. Bush doesn't drink anymore, after I had a drink I made sure I had one for him.

The centre-front area of the venue was reserved for sponsor tickets (both VIP and regular) which was a little disappointing. Several of them didn't seem particularly interested in being there, and those of us who bought in the first three days didn't seem to get particularly good seats (no idea where the $170 tickets began). After a brief introduction from the CEO of Bedford Biofuels (who apparently never bothered to pre-read the introduction on the program, which he had to recite outright), we got to see George W.

One protestor blew his $100 pretty quick (he'd set off my spidey senses earlier, he looked far less happy to be there than most and was dressed like a slob) by shouting out to a politician that he was mad about his lies. Throughout any of the heclers (there was another one, who like all good left-wingers is an unabashed anti-Semite, screamed out about all the evils done by Jews at the first mention of Israel. A third said something somewhere. Security took care of all of them, and Bush didn't miss a beat. These are the same people who throw chocolate milk at Stockwell Day.

Bush's talk itself was very good, as anybody not suffering BDS could have told you it would be. He begins by telling us how he enjoys coming to Alberta because of its similarities to Texas, and that he may begin referring to Texas as "Alberta of the South". I would gladly pay $150,000 for him to begin actually doing this. His best anecdote of the day was his first: he talked about living in Dallas having upset his neighbours as 650 cars drove down his cul-du-sac. To repay them, the "great diplomat" (as he called himself to chuckles) went door to door apologizing.. only to have his dog Barney (raised in the White House) crap on their lawns.
Here I was, 2 weeks earlier I was in office, and now I had a plastic bag on my hand cleaning up after my dog.
Over the course of the talk I got the feeling that this was an aspect of living that Bush never really got accustomed to not having as President (and, to a lesser extent, Texas Governor). He enjoyed his time as Leader of the Free World (after a fashion) but was more at home back in Texas where he could do some hobby ranching and just be George again.

Many of his other stories had to do with George H.W. Bush, America's 41st President. When he first mentioned his wife Laura there was a large applause just from the sound of her name, and another burst of applause when he bragged about how cool she was. He recounted that he once declared in a speech that she was the greatest First Lady in history...and his mother was in the audience. Whoops.

As much as possible, Bush tried to talk about his non-9/11 parts of his Presidency. He didn't talk about pre-9/11 much at all (No Child Left Behind, Chinese spyplanes), but talked first about the economic downturn and the need to push for the TARP bill that saved the banking sector. He said he really loved free markets, and knew that small business and private sector innovation was the true way to economic growth and recovery -- and another break for thunderous applause. I got the feeling he has a regret of having to invest government money, and he implored governments worldwide to drop the stimulus spending as soon as humanly possible.

He also took the time to praise Canada, praise the oilsands, and quip that he'd rather America bought their energy from a place like Canada that likes America versus places in the Middle East that hate them. More applause. He also took his time to say how important it is for trade and not falling into economic protectionism (more applause). He emphasized that in the long run free trade not only did a better job of helping people starving in Africa than foreign aid (applause) but also that free markets lead to freedom and that leads to giving people hope for the future and away from the thugs who collect hopeless people to recruit as suicide bombers (applause).

Now when George W. Bush gave us his opinion on what governments should do, he made it very clear that he wasn't giving advice to his successor (more on this in a moment). In one of my George Bush Video countdown posts I noted that several of Bush's activities as President were specifically tailored to avoid Clinton activities that Bush thought were uncouth: pardons and cruise missiles and transfer of power pranks, etc. etc. I had either forgot or never knew that criticism from former Presidents was another thing Bush was certain he wouldn't do out of office. So nothing Bush meant to say was criticism of Obama. He never mentioned Obama by name, but made a reference to him, waited for applause...and it never came. 2,000 people in the Shaw, hearing Bush talk about President Monkey, sat on their hands. Its one of those beautiful moments.

Eventually Bush did get onto the subject of 9/11, and recanted that as a pilot his response to hearing the first plane hit the WTC was wonderment how a professionally trained airline pilot could have possibly made such a mistake. It was the second plane hitting that gave him the immortal news: "Mr. President, the nation is under attack." From there he talked about what he and Condi (more applause) started formulating for emergency strategy. He again thanked Canada for accepting so many grounded US airplanes (the Bush Sr.'s landed in Minnesota, and when George W. got a hold of his mother to ask how she was doing, she replied with "you grounded my plane!"), and related how interesting it was to him that the Japanese Prime Minister called to say "Japan stands with you"...remember George H.W. Bush was a solider in the Japanese Theatre.

Oh by the way Bush-haters, you wanted a verbal flub in his hourlong speech? There it was: Bush talked about Canada being in the Pacific Theatre, and he meant the European Theatre. That's it. That's all.

Bush then thanked us all again and welcomed Kelly Hrudey, who sat down in what looked like a weird version of HNIC After Hours with the worst sound guys on the planet. Seriously, for Bush's first 10-15 minutes they had to keep adjusting the sound because Bush's microphones and Kelly's microphones weren't operating at the same volume. This is elementary PA system operation here, that any half-competant amateur learns his first week. These professionals couldn't figure it out at all and finally ended up just giving Bush a handheld microphone (more applause).

There really was a lot of applause.

Kelly asked about the torture accusations, and Bush explained his rationale: with advice from some of the top lawyers money can buy Bush wanted it explicitly stated exactly how far he could go. Bush reminded us that Taliban operatives are not covered by the Geneva Convention, and at the end of the day he used this "far-as-possible-by-law" procedure on...three people. And he assured everyone that while he couldn't discuss details he said his actions protected the American people from another attack and that he would not apologize for those actions.

He said also that he grew up in Texas, that it was the environment of rural western Texas that helped as much as his parents in the task of raising him in his transformative first 25 years. Its probably his second-best joke when he discussed how in the Oval Office there's a section for a President to hang the portrait of the previous President who inspired him most. George W. Bush put up Abraham Lincoln who he says built the country. When his father first came to see his son in the Oval Office, he immediately noticed that the portrait hanging in that spot... wasn't him. Whoops again, eh?

I was, again, disappointed that there were no question-and-answer segments, no "take your picture with George W." moments, no autograph sessions, etc., but I suppose it was just hopefulness on my part that such a thing would happen.

As the show ended, those of us who didn't have access to the Canada Place underground parkade had to go up and walk past the protesters. You remember them. I blogged about them extensively on Tuesday morning. I posted a couple tweets about them too, but the thing that struck me was how much it had in common with 1984's infamous "Two Minute Hate". This was stretched out to 3 hours and change, but the essence was still the same. Again it was covered in the Tuesday morning blogpost, but there was pure anger and hatred outside. Vicious and unfounded.

Contrast with the attendees: smiling, laughing, conversing. I talked with small business leaders, the sister of a member of EEDC (who is planning to complain a lot about the technical problems), somebody from Dave Hancock's office, and several hot asian girls with their younger-than-me boyfriends in fancy suits. There was much more ethnic diversity than the white folk angry screaming [and singing Bob Dylan songs which are even worse! -ed] outside. In the end you ended up with some successful people of all walks of life who decided to go see George W. Bush speak -- and a bunch of furious brain-dead whities who just want to prove to themselves they aren't racist when really they are, and show their opposition to violence by demanding that a former U.S. President be murdered in cold blood.


October 21st

It was missed in the crazy Bush hoopla, but happy belated birthday, Khalil Greene!

LIVEBLOG: Columbus Blue Jackets at Edmonton Oilers, Regular Season NHL matchup

7:27pm: Oilers. Bluejackets. Sportsnet. Next!

7:30pm: "Khabi times are ahead?" "Bulin Wall" special report. Actually he's doing pretty good, considering how many shots he gets per game.

7:31pm: Mike Comrie has the flu, but has to play anyways. Flu, eh? Is that what they're calling Syphilis these days?

7:33pm: Stone, Souray, Stais, Pouliot, Pisani, Brule. Enough injuries for mid-October? I just hope Visnovsky can play a complete season

7:34pm: Kevin Quinn & Louis Debrusk are your announce crew.

7:35pm: Follow @PaqTwinn on Twitter to have a live tweet-cast of this game as well.

7:38pm: .977 save percentage for former Oiler Mattieu Garon in net for the Jackets. Yikes.

1st period, 19:12: Bad play by Khabibulin, but the Oilers press on.

1st period, 19:02: GOAL! OILERS SCORE!

1st period, 18:15: "Die Gene, Die" a friend submits over MSN.

1st period, 16:52: Penner gets into a tussle in front of Garon, as the puck slides behind the goal line just after the whistle. Nobody cares.

1st period, 15:26: No Columbus shots on net yet? Wow. Oh, so much for Garon's save percentage at this point of the game.

1st period, 14:38: Columbus's best start of the season they tells us.

1st period, 14:12: Oilers back on the attack.

1st period, 12:33: Another big push in front of the Columbus net generates a scoring possibility. Still 1-0 Oilers.

1st period, 11:58: The announcers talking about having to "figure out" a right-handed goaltender. Uh, they already beat him a minute in.

1st period, 11:27: The Blue Jackets got their first shot on net.

1st period, 10:49: Penner tries to get cute, and saucer passes backwards to give the puck away.

1st period, 6:03: Lots of back and forth action while I was preparing the baked potatoes.

1st period, 4:43: Seeing a lot of good play from former Oilers. Except Raffi Torres. Lazy Mexicans.

1st period, 4:03: Mike Comrie is doing quite a bit, actually. When I heard they were forced to skate him because they couldn't get anybody in from Springfield, I was concerned they were leaving him on the 2nd line. I'd say a fourth line 4-minute game would have been appropriate.

1st period, 3:57 Huselius scores. 1-1 tie, and the Blue Jackets now lead in shots.

1st period, 2:51 Jackets penalty, so Oilers are on the powerplay.

1st period, 1:38: Sportsnet isn't saying how much time is left 4-on-4. No networks do this, and I don't know why not.

1st period, 0:23: Raffi scores, shutting me up. 2-1 lead for Columbus.

1st period, 0:00: Almost a fight, but Smid is walking off with the number of teeth he started with.

8:30pm: Back in action

2nd period, 19:40: 4-on-4 again to start the 2nd after the almost-fight at the end of the 1st.

2nd period, 19:22: Oh yeah, its the second period, which means that Columbus is over on the other side of the rink. I can stop my heart from collapsing now.

2nd period, 19:03: I'm not the only confused one: Quinn just called Khabibulin "Garon".

2nd period, 18:44: Oilers net is off the moorings but play continues because the rush goes towards Garon. I don't understand how they can justify that.

2nd period, 17:58: 3-1 Columbus now, as Huselius scores for the second time.

2nd period, 17:23: Chimera is continuing to hammer away at the Oilers net. The team is looking every bit as sick with the flu as we've been told. Horrible co-ordination.

2nd period, 17:09: 15-7 are the shots for Columbus. So much for the sound defensive play. Still 3-1, but could be 5-1 at this point.

2nd period, 16:08: McIntyre and crew got a good shot on net and then a scrum in front of the goalmouth. That's the best moment for the Oilers in almost 4 minutes of 2nd period play.

2nd period, 14:27: The desire to play is there on Cogs' line, but the tired legs of the Oiler players just aren't cooperating.

2nd period, 11:26: Chorney is very similar to the first word of the song Чёрные глаза which was a big hit in Europe a few years ago. The word means "black", and thats how I feel watching his defensive play so far in this game.

2nd period, 10:41: Cogliano and Moreau try a shorthanded 2-on-2 but are denied.

2nd period, 9:53: Big save by Khabibulin. The first time I've been able to type that in ages.

2nd period, 9:31: Dustin Penner fighting in front of Garon, almost puts the biscuit in the basket several times. Still 3-1 Columbus.

2nd period, 8:44: "Battle at the blueline" the announcers say. I was about to type that!

2nd period, 8:08: Great play in front of the net for the Oilers, but they don't connect. Chimera races back and the Blue Jackets score again. 4-1

2nd period, 7:51: Penner scores right away, and its 4-2 Oilers!

2nd period, 7:35: "The Oilers have cut the lead in half." Er, 4 - 1 = 3. 4 - 2 = 2. 2>(3/2)

2nd period, 2:31: Another day, another ineffective Oilers powerplay.

2nd period, 2:00: 37 seconds on the powerplay, Oilers pressing behind the net.

2nd period, 1:41: 17 seconds of 5-on-3, the Oilers almost scored with the penalty on and a 6-4 push.

2nd period, 1:05: Hemksy scores on the powerplay and its a 4-3 game for Columbus. Shutting me up again. Um, I'll guarantee you that Shawn Horcoff will never get a hat trick in an Oilers uniform. Prove me wrong this time!

2nd period, 0:52: "And the Oilers cut the lead down to one". This, I stress, is cutting it down by half.

9:06pm: The second intermission is underway. 4-3 for Columbus.

9:13pm: The Sportsnet bit here about goaltenders on pace for 70+ games in Canadian teams makes very little sense. Vancouver and Calgary are having trouble with this, but while Khabibulin has played 8 games and is "on pace" to play 73 tonight, Deslaurier is playing the weekend game so Bulin will be "on pace" then to play 65, and suddenly we're talking a huge difference. They of course say nothing about the Maple Leafs, where no goalie in their system is projected to play more than 19 games all year.

3rd period, 19:44: And we're underway again.

3rd period, 19:02: The Oilers haven't been having much OJ in the 2nd intermission. The team is looking sluggish starting off the 3rd, including Gagner who just fell down on his own volition.

3rd period, 17:25: Oilers almost get a goal. Most of the last 3-4 minutes they have been trying too hard just getting their stick on the puck rather than setting up any coherent plays or making sure the puck goes the direction that benefits the team.

3rd period, 16:41: Nilson smashes a BlueJacket off the puck in the middle of the ice.

3rd period, 16:00: Penner aim's for Garon's 5-hole but no dice.

3rd period, 15:42: Garbage-kov off to the penalty box.

3rd period, 15:40: Correction, Dorset is off for hitting Grebeshkov.

3rd period, 14:48: Oilers racing up the ice with 75 seconds left in the Oiler powerplay. Comrie is trying to be the playmaker all of a sudden, he must be feeling better.

3rd period, 14:03: Rick Nash with a shot on net after the Oilers cycled rather than shot.

3rd period, 13:56 GOAL! Oilers come back after the Nash play and slip the puck into the net. All tied at 4 as Penner scores again

3rd period, 13:40: The Oilers have broken the Blue Jackets' road-penalty kill virginity. Niiice.

3rd period, 12:02: There's a broken stick in the slot in front of the Columbus net. No idea who's.

3rd period, 9:47: The crowd is starting to realize that whenever Dustin Penner and his line are on the offensive in Columbus's zone they should stand on their feet and be ready to see something amazing.

3rd period, 9:16 Oilers re-take the lead! Vishnovsky rifles a shot past Garon (on Penner's line) to put Edmonton ahead for the first time since 3:57 of the 1st period.

3rd period, 7:52: Is Andrew Cogliano hurt? He has limped onto the bench but seems to only be drinking water, not racing to the training centre.

3rd period, 7:18: Smid blocks a shot from Nash that would have gone into the net.

3rd period, 7:01: Another save by Khabibulin to keep the score 5-4 for Edmonton.

3rd period, 6:06: Strudwick going to the box. Khabibulin almost let in a weak shot from the blue line, so he hit Chimera with his stick. The refs saw the hit but didn't see the guilty party.

3rd period, 5:45: A pass in the high slot hit a skate and got redirected a high speed towards the net. Khabibulin didn't see it, but the back boards did: the puck hit it as it went wide of the net.

3rd period, 5:04: Columbus can't keep the puck in the Oilers end.

3rd period, 4:35: I thought that puck had gone in, but luckily it hadn't. Still 5-4 Oilers.

3rd period, 4:20: "I think Khabibulin was the only one who knew he had it in his glove." Uh, the crowd sure did.

3rd period, 4:04: More tough battles in front of the Oilers net, but our goalie has come through. 5-4.

3rd period, 3:30: Columbus continues to press on. The Oilers need another 3 goals to avoid any 0:01 second miracles.

3rd period, 3:14: Raffi Torres is off to the penalty box. Don't elbow a guy in front of the ref, buddy!

3rd period, 2:24: Horcoff and Gagner try for a big push on net, but it doesn't work.

3rd period, 1:39: Oilers have less than 30 seconds left in the PP, and then its empty net time for Columbus.

3rd period, 1:04: Torres penalty over, and the Oilers are making a rush on the net.

3rd period, 1:03: Another elbowing ex-Oiler: Chimera is off to the box and the extra attacker may not come into play.

3rd period, 0:48: Garon out of the net, but the Oilers are still on the PP. 5-on-5 with an empty net?

3rd period, 0:17: The puck dribbles into the empty net. I told you so.

3rd period, 0:11: Robert Nilsson has got credit for the goal, though it was dumb luck.

3rd period, 0:00: A corner scrum ends this game, and Khabibulin pulls out another win.

10:04pm: Off to Sportsnet Connected. Penner is on pace for 62 goals this year. Oh, if only if only...

10:07pm: Sportsnet did more math: Oilers and Flames are tied for 1st in the NHL with goals-for with 36.

10:23pm: Okay, liveblog closed. Oilers are now tied with Calgary for 4th in the Western Conference, meaning Saturday's HNIC game will be insanely important.


(this post will be "sticky" until Thursday October 22nd. scroll down for new content)

Welcome to Edmonton, George W. Bush!
Today's the day: at 5pm this afternoon, The Greatest President of the 21st Century will speak at the Shaw Conference Centre. Tickets (if the event hasn't sold out) are available here (along with a hilariously faggy photo of Gavin Rossdale and the other members of Bush). If you ever do read this Mr. Bush, welcome to your second post-Presidential trip to the glorious province of Alberta [did he ever visit Alberta as a sitting President? I don't believe so, but do you see 'researcher' stamped on my forehead? -ed]. I for one am pleased to welcome you. Pay no attention to the demented left-wing retards who think otherwise.

While this is nominally about President Bush, this is more about the idiots who are planning a protest this afternoon. The ultimate question is why? For part of that answer, try to remember that Bill Clinton has spoken in Edmonton with no fanfare whatsoever. I've written about the Bush-Clinton speaking comparisons before. Twice in fact. If I do say so myself, they happen to be very good posts. My favourite is this one: Clinton Faces Protests During Calgary talk. In it I re-do a few of the articles about so-called "anti-war" campaigners and compare them to Bill Clinton, who of course we all remember was also declared as a War Criminal. In fact, as you'll read in that post, all U.S. Presidents are "war criminals" and the perjorative just doesn't hold the revered levels of fear they once did. You've overplayed your "war criminal" hand, my friends. Someday, maybe with Obama in office and maybe with somebody else, you could end up with an actual honest-to-God war criminal in charge of the world's largest most powerful military. But when that happens, your charges won't stick. He will run roughshod without fear of reprisal over opponents around the globe, but all your rhetoric will already be spent. Indeed, if President Monkey goes ahead and brings about thermonuclear bloodshed the mush-brained skull of a liberal will probably have already switched gears to cheerfully accept it: maybe labelling those who oppose WarMaster Obama as the "war criminals" for daring to fight back. But that's for another day. The second post covers much of the same ground: War Criminal Bill Clinton was in Montreal scant weeks ago with no angry mobs. Yet for all that, this isn't what this post is about.

Instead, what this is about is the psychological problems evident by those who are members of the "Edmonton Coalition Against War and Racism". While I generally eschew pop psychology I will break a few textbooks out here and try to pick apart exactly what has gone wrong with the wiring of the communist brains that will be gathering in front of the Shaw this afternoon. Apologies, incidently, if a lot of this covers ground already discussed in this excellent blogpost on "Bush Derangement Syndrome" -- BDS.

The Bush-haters with their BDS on full display this afternoon are sick people. We should perhaps be sending them a little farther north to Alberta Hospital (its still open, fortunately) where they can be given the care and attention by professionals they obviously need. A little extreme, I admit, but that's the vulgarity of mental illness for you. At the beginning of this post you may have noticed the title referencing the infamous MoveOn.org. Did you happen to know the origin of the name? Back in the days of War Criminal Bill Clinton, when the ultimately-successful move to impeach Clinton started to gain steam, prominant Clinton apologists kept insisting that the Senate should "move on" and not be bogged down by the President's mere disobedience of the law [actual laws, like perjury and contempt of court, of course. We aren't talking some mythical "law against taking military action against aggressive enemies after intense diplomatic and economic measures failed miserably" here which is where the Coalition's little rally sort of falls apart. -ed].

Thus was MoveOn.org began, and without more than a little irony its now the left-wing supporters of the movement who find that they cannot, in fact, move on. Another interesting note is that of course right-wingers did move on: other than a few comparisons with Bush and the previous President in his first year (quite normal in Presidencies) the Clinton years were generally forgotten. Ann Coulter's work on the impeachement trial resulted in her 1998 book High Crimes and Misdemeanors: The Case Against Bill Clinton. In 2002, with Clinton out of office, she released another book about Clint...er, no, wait, she didn't! She wrote about a different topic entirely. Of all the people not to "move on" after Clinton's election, David Letterman and the other liberal late-night comics were the biggest offenders [clearly Letterman couldn't "move on" from a story about a sleazeball using his power to get women that his ugly face could never give him... -ed]. In fact, liberals were suddenly unable to move on from Florida, and Al Gore's election defeat. If you wanted somebody who couldn't move on in the first eight months of 2001, they had a Gore/Mondale sticker in the back of their car. [Giggle all you want, but odds are you don't remember who Al Gore's running mate was. -ed]

We can see now that this MoveOn problem has been a thorn in the side of the liberal brain for a long time now. These so-called 'progressives' are really regressives: when faced with situations that present them with difficulty they regress back. It's a form of angry nostalgia: Gore should have won in 2000 you see, so Bush "stole" something they valued: their belief that their foolhardy philosophy was the right way. Throughout 2001, the political events of the day showed the world and the nation that luckily George W. Bush was the President of the United States of America. Al Gore would have probably given the Chinese an aircraft carrier after the spyplane affair if in return they promised to build a windmill somewhere (remember he and his boss were well known for shady deals involving the Chinese). 9/11 cemented this fact (see today's #1 entry on the George W. Bush Video Countdown later this morning), and the left has never forgiven reality ever since.

That was the day that left-wing media outlets decided they had one mission in their lives (and with the current financial state of the industry we can see they put everything they had into it): bring down George W. Bush. This wasn't just restricted to the news: all of the mentally inferior media folk took part. Family Guy, The Daily Show, and Kanye West all started out during the Bush Presidency. Biased reviewers such as Alan Cross made sure that anti-Bush musicians got all of their second rate anti-Bush albums positive reviews. It would be the Obama administration before anybody learned that Whoopi Goldberg considered rape to be acceptable. The filters were all in place and sure the bosses would all go broke in the process, but another one-term Bush would make it all worthwhile. Except, you know, that never happened. Instead, Bush pushed ahead of John Kerry and got the second term (thanks to tax cuts) that tax increases cost his father. Poetic justice there, I suppose.

But the 2008 election already feels like ages ago: its time for the left to defend their man in 1600 Pensylvania Avenue. They will be the ones who have to endure their guy vilified for his actions/inactions. They will have to watch YouTube videos that expose his hypocrisy and listen to him being called a chimp. The problem is, they aren't very good at it. They can't handle being on the defense, only the offense. Anti-Bush liberals are the Robbie Schremp of political theory. That doesn't entirely explain the crowd with Bush Derangement Syndrome at the Shaw Conference Centre this afternoon, but its a good start. They miss being in opposition where they can rally for attention. I'll get back to that in a bit.

Defending Barack Obama, it turns out, isn't too easy for them to do. I condecendingly posted to Twitter a week and change ago the comparison at this point of the approval ratings of Bush/Obama, but its more than that. Obama hasn't done anything (positive, at least) of consequence. When you place your entire life to getting a "transformative" politician elected and then the few changes he makes are negatively received, its a tough pill to swallow. From the dumbest black man on Chicago's southside to the most pretentious Norwegian Nobel Committee member to the first member of Edmonton Coalition Against War and Racism to get their teeth bashed in by Edmonton Police Services, those who pushed for Barack Obama as the "anti George W. Bush" are discovering that the "anti George W. Bush" is -- surprise surprise -- more imcompetant than their friendly media outlets labelled the actual George W. Bush. It's hard to swallow, and the natural reaction (not meaning to defend such psychologically pathetic reactions) is to continue to blame everything on the man who quietly retired into private life until convinced to travel to Calgary one evening in March to deliver a speaking engagement. One notices that not a lot of "not Clinton"ing was going on in Bush's first eight months in office (9/11 understandably changed enough to not be include-able) and instead was comparing Bush to Gore, the person he beat. You never hear about John McCain anymore. Why? Because he isn't "the enemy". Bush is, and for a group claiming to oppose war they certainly have no difficulty acting as if it indeed is a war.

Left-wing thought is probably to blame here: if there are no good guys and bad guys, then there are no enemies. Like any emotion, anger and hatred beat within us all as powerfully as love and charity do. Queen (and Jefferson Airplane) have famously asked for "Somebody to Love" [and one of them meant actually falling in love, rather than AIDS-free sodomy -ed], but deep down we also really do need somebody to hate.
When the lies are found to be truth
and most your votes come from youth
don't you want somebody to hate
don't you need somebody to hate
wouldn't you hate somebody to love
you better find somebody to hate
George W. Bush fits this mold in a way that, say, Osama bin Laden does not. Osama isn't white, you see, and liberals brains are really so distorted by modern day indoctrination that they cannot possibly see somebody who isn't white as a black hat (oohhh, irony). Bush is also a Republican you see, and politics are really an "us versus them" game where liberals are certain that their opponents aren't just political opponents but enemies to be fought.

But fighting real enemies is hard work, and left-wingers don't really like that sort of stuff. In a way, protesting a retired President is like a reflexive anti-American version of "Hugs for Darfur". Doing things is hard. Joining the army or starting a mercenary firm to attack those who engage in violence in Sudan or Iraq or Pakistan takes work, and offer no opportunities to shamelessly advertise your "compassion". Hugs for Darfur won't help a single person, but provide a security blanket of such for the inadequacies of the Edmonton Coalition Against War and Racism members. They didn't stop Saddam's starving of his own children while Iraqi missiles were equipped with circuits from smuggled Playstation2s, George W. Bush did that. All throughout the 90s liberals like Steve Notley whined about the Taliban. George W. Bush removed them from office, and in response Steve's equally vile sister Rachel had no kind words to say about him. With a hostile media at home and a block of his own population who would rather side with the Che Gueveras and Saddam Husseins of this world than their own President, he achieved numerous foreign policy goals over the complaints of the do-nothings in the House and Senate (both, it can be reminded, ended 2008 with far lower approval ratings than Bush himself).

Which leads us to the final psychological point here: attention. The media coverage of the protests is part of it, but the rest of it is the real psychological issue with the mentally unstable folks you will see at the Shaw this afternoon. They want to be seen as outraged. The reasons for the outrage are nonexistant with Bush out of office, but the desire to be outraged and to be seen as being outraged is critical. Members of Edmonton Coalition Against War and Racism don't give two shits about wars, and they really don't have a problem with racism (ask them to combat Japanese bigotry against other asians and their eyes glaze over). They don't, really, and any members claiming otherwise in the media today are either lying or are so delusional that they believe lies (given the other effects of Bush Derangement Syndrome, it could easily be the last one). They care about opposing capitalism, a (nominally) pro-capitalist President, a (nominally) pro-capitalist nation, and those in this world who are smarter than them, better than them, more accomplished than them, and more moral than them. Obama isn't really the "anti George W. Bush" -- they are. They are all 1/100th the man Bush is, and it eats away at them that somebody who "isn't on their team" can do well. The protests are a validation of their beliefs in the face of crumbling support from reality: Obama's election didn't end the world's problems, it in fact increased them. Continuing to protest George W. Bush is really all they have. They can't let go. They can't MoveOn.org, and they cannot accept that.

There's something wrong with them. Remember that when you see their pictures on the news tonight.


My evil evil tweets

Longtime listener, firsttime caller "A.H." replied today on this little mini-post about today's WCB hostage crisis:

Been following you on twitter all day as you spout your nonsense. You are a scary, anti-social person. As you are a conservative extremist, I suggest you go back to the forest and live as a hunter-gatherer, because that is where society would be today if conservatives actually had influence.

Ahh, so much silliness in a single post [I thought societies, not people, were "hunter-gatherer" but I guess I'm just crazy! -ed]. To paraphrase Ann Coulter, I'm not an extremist in the slightest. I am a moderate centrist. People like A.H. are the extremists.

Now what kind of nonsense have I been posting on Twitter today? Let's check and see:
So, where exactly was all the scary anti-social stuff? C'mon A.H., you've got nothing. In fact, we've seen where conservative societies end up, and we've seen where liberal societies end up. If you want to wax nostalgic about Soviet Russia that's your call of course, but in this crazy place called reality we'll take a free-market society over one run by George W. Bush-haters any day of the week.

Saskatoon Bush

President Bush, following last night's amazing engagement in Edmonton (I'll cover it in a review in a few days), went to Saskatoon tonight. As usual hundreds of sufferers of Bush Derangement Syndrome were to be seen.

Seeing how they were a bunch of dumb left-wingers with mental problems from Saskatchwan its really a wonder any of their signs were spelt correctly.

In case you needed more reasons to visit Fernie Alpine Resort

If you do a Google image search for large images on "Fernie Alpine", you get this: (click to enlarge)

Um, not that I'm complaining or anything, but why do you get this photo?

I don't know what it has to do with Fernie, but it sure makes me want to go!

WCB hostage taking

Today in Edmonton a gunman held hostages for 10 hours at the Workers Compensation Board office.

The general consensus from people I've talked to today with WCB problems before and now is goddamn that asshole who beat me to it.

Pretty much the WCB offices were asking for it. It's hard engendering sympathy for an organization that so abuses its monopoly position.


George W. Bush Video Countdown, #1

It's been a great countdown. Let's recap:

10. George H.W. Bush aircraft carrier

9. Transitioning to Obama

8. Aircraft carrier landing

7. Teaching black people how to dance

6. The Liberty Speech

5. "Major League Asshole"

4. "I earned capital in the campaign, political capital, and now I intend to spend it."

3. Axis of Evil

2. Shoe Throwing? Bring it on!

And now, with George W. Bush's Edmonton speaking engagement only a couple hours away, it's time to bring out our best Bush video moment. And for that, we need to turn to his shining glory, the immediate aftermath of September 11th.

There were several things from the Clinton Presidency that Bush recalled with distaste, and you can see many of these experiences guiding his Presidency. Entering office with the "W's stolen off keyboards" incident led Bush to ensure that his successor entered office with the full support of the staff of the outgoing administration. Bush very publicly expressed disgust with Pardon-gate where every criminal with any link to the Clintons got a full pardon as he left office... in 2009 Bush's small number of pardons was immediately shrank when he learned the beneficiary's father was a Republican donour. Clinton had the U.S. military bombing Serbia from on high, and when Iraq/Afghanistan began Bush was convinced he was going to do things differently: if a cause was so important that a few individual Iraqi and Afghani lives were worth the sacrifice than surely American soldiers who had vowed to sacrifice their lives if need be for a greater good could be added to the roster. The Cindy Sheenans of the world weep and cry hearing about this, but better for both American and Iraqi peoples to be fighting and dying on the ground than the latter dying as the former fly away in total security confident only the darkies need suffer.

When I take action, I’m not going to fire a $2 million missile at a $10 empty tent and hit a camel in the butt. It’s going to be decisive
- George W. Bush
But that's not the quote in our top video moment (for example, there's no video). Instead I bring you this:

Our top video moment starts at 0:46 into the video. When Bush's megaphone isn't loud enough to be heard everywhere at first, the crowd calls out "We can't hear you George." Bush responds with one of his most memorable lines:
I can hear you, the rest of the world can hear you and the people who knocked these buildings down will hear all of us soon
- George W. Bush

Attaboy George! See you in a few hours!


George W. Bush Video Countdown, #2

President Bush was a badass. Nobody could doubt that after watching this video. After having two shoes thrown as him, Bush got back to the podium, calmed the crowd down, and incorporated the events into his thesis. He's a little shaken, but otherwise fine. You can't see it clearly in a youtube video, but some people insist you can see a fire in his eyes when he pops back up, almost tempting the journalist to bring it on.

Say what you will about the Greatest President of the Twenty-First Century, but as we countdown to Tuesday's George W. Bush speech in Edmonton at the Shaw Conference Centre, you certainly know he's a spry ol' devil.

This is star 69? Ugh. Try not to listen to the lyrics

In honour of Hilary Duff's appearance in Rexall for the Oilers-Wild game on Friday (where our mutual acquaintance scored a goal), here's probably her best song [yikes! -ed], as seen on her live DVD.


Lily Tran's boyfriend shot?

steve pillon and richard mah got shot at the jay z concert te other night outside deisel ultra lounge.they did not die.
This was commented on an old Lily Tran post tonight, referencing the two men shot after the Tuesday Jay-Z concert. (Twitter commentary sampled here).

Is it true? Here's the 630 CHED story on the shooting.

People who had just left the Diesel Ultra Lounge were sitting in a silver luxury car in a parking lot just north of 119th Avenue when the vehicle was sprayed with bullets fired from a passing car. Multiple bullets hit the windshield and two men were wounded. One was shot in the head and another was wounded in an arm.

It certainly looks plausible. No racial indication of the victims was given.

Bonus link; October 19 2009, 11:11pm: I forgot to mention that Marky Mark's Thoughts has also pontificated on Lily Tran with considerably more comments than I've gotten. He sticks with the thesis though: Lily Tran's actions are the reasons she is dead. Her friends might cry, but the rest of us can just shrug it off.

George W. Bush Video Countdown, #3

In 2002, George W. Bush's debut "State of the Union" speech was a gooder: it brought in the infamous "axis of evil" concept, and certainly set out the President's bold achievements:

We last met in an hour of shock and suffering. In four short months, our nation has comforted the victims, begun to rebuild New York and the Pentagon, rallied a great coalition, captured, arrested, and rid the world of thousands of terrorists, destroyed Afghanistan's terrorist training camps, saved a people from starvation, and freed a country from brutal oppression.

The American flag flies again over our embassy in Kabul. Terrorists who once occupied Afghanistan now occupy cells at Guantanamo Bay. And terrorist leaders who urged followers to sacrifice their lives are running for their own.

America and Afghanistan are now allies against terror. We'll be partners in rebuilding that country. And this evening we welcome the distinguished interim leader of a liberated Afghanistan: Chairman Hamid Karzai.

The last time we met in this chamber, the mothers and daughters of Afghanistan were captives in their own homes, forbidden from working or going to school. Today women are free, and are part of Afghanistan's new government. And we welcome the new Minister of Women's Affairs, Doctor Sima Samar.

Our progress is a tribute to the spirit of the Afghan people, to the resolve of our coalition, and to the might of the United States military. When I called our troops into action, I did so with complete confidence in their courage and skill. And tonight, thanks to them, we are winning the war on terror. The man and women of our Armed Forces have delivered a message now clear to every enemy of the United States: Even 7,000 miles away, across oceans and continents, on mountaintops and in caves -- you will not escape the justice of this nation.

So as Third Edge of the Sword counts down to Tuesday's historic speech in Edmonton, let's check out the longest video of our series:

Post #1500, Baby!

Just a placeholder here, but 1,500 posts in under four years. Yay me!


George W. Bush Video Countdown, #4

Two days after his 2004 win, President Bush did an excellent press conference. You will likely remember this infamous line:

Let me put it to you this way: I earned capital in the campaign, political capital, and now I intend to spend it. It is my style.
If you cut out the Social Security discussions it really is a beautiful speech. The upper line remains his most famous: Bush knew full well that in January 2009 his approval rating wouldn't mean much. The group of angry protesters planning to storm the Shaw when Bush comes to Edmonton seem to think this is some crazy accident, when it was mostly by design. Popular or unpopular after the fact bears little impact when facing the Grim Reaper at the end of your life: he cares about your accomplishments, not your number of Facebook Friends [Twitter followers are a totally different story! -ed].

So as the "anti-racism" protesters (is there a Coalition Against Racism But Totally Cool On War?) make their final preparations to get their asses shot by Edmonton Police Services violently call for murder while getting kid glove treatment that would make Greenpeace blush, we bring the sixth installment of Third Edge of the Sword's countdown to George W. Bush speaking in Edmonton one week from tonight.

No video this time, couldn't find an embedded version, but you can view the video directly here. You can also read the transcript.


Now thats what I call something to give thanks for!

I sadly won't be partaking in it, but for future Thanksgivings you really can't go wrong with...

...bacon-wrapped turducken.

(Good runner-up: deep fried turkey)


Canadian Police Chase

Nobel Prizes now in all Monkey Treat Bags

A more-of-a-shocker-it-happened-already story today as President Monkey inexplicably wins a Nobel Peace Prize.

Pretty much everybody on the planet, upon hearing that news, has to go... huh?

Even when your remember that the Nobel Peace Prize generally goes to people who reduce, rather than increase the amount of peace in the world (c.f. Kofi Annan, Yassar Arafat) the award makes no sense. After all, the peace prize is awarded to

the person who shall have done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses.

This person does have to "do" the most or best work, which implies that some sort of work towards the fraternity between nations has occured. As I'm sure you're all aware, Obama hasn't done anything. The closest I suppose you can argue is since the U.S. Army is a "standing army" and the Taliban are not, he will reduce a standing army in numbers as American soldiers are picked off by suicide bombers. Doesn't seem much like a man holding and promoting peace congresses now does it?

The Nobel Prize has gone to those who haven't really done anything before (c.f. Jimmy Carter, Aung San Suu Kyi) but usually come with some sort of political motive. Carter's nomination was supposed to be a rebuke of President Bush (subsequently laughed off by the American people), and Kyi's was a rebuke of the military junta who arrested her before she could enact a single policy (who just used it as an excuse to bump her sentence up by another couple decades). The only question here is to determine what the political motive could be. It could be a promotion of Obama's continual efforts hoping to encourage his poll numbers to bump back up -- but seems unlikely, since even in Sweden they can notice that the mainstream media has already flogged that dead horse long after it was buried in the ground and a DVD presentation of its life given to its family.

It could be an apology for not getting the Olympics, but that doesn't really cover it either.

Even Obama himself is a little unsure how to frame this new development.
Standing in the Rose Garden to make his first public statement since being woken early by aides bringing news of the award, Mr Obama stressed that his win was just the beginning of his work.

He said he did not feel he deserved to be in the company of some of the "transformative figures" who had previously received the award.

Some of his aims, particularly the goal of universal nuclear disarmament, would be difficult to achieve even within his lifetime, let alone his presidency, Mr Obama said.

And he sought to deflect some of the global surprise at his win, describing the award as "affirmation of American leadership on behalf of aspirations held by people in all nations".

"I know that throughout history the Nobel Peace Prize has not just been used to honour specific achievements," he said.

"It's also been used as a means to give momentum to a set of causes. And that is why I will accept this award as a call to action, a call for all nations to confront the common challenges of the 21st Century."
So if Obama is correct, then there's an attempt to push his agenda. However, most of his agenda has been domestic, rather than in foreign policy. Apart from more troops in Afghanistan, there isn't even much on the horizon as specific policy goals of Obama. He would like North Korea to be less crazy and Iran to remain non-nuclear and less crazy, but so would President Bush. There are really no foreign policy goals of the Obama Administration apart from hardcore apeasement of foreign dictat...





...oh shit.

Dude, your tax dollars just flew out the window

I heard a news report about this during the Rush Limbaugh show this morning:

NC Wants Dell to Repay Incentives for Closing Plant:

N.C. government leaders are asking Dell to repay tax breaks and other incentives the PC maker received from them when it built its PC plant four years ago. Dell has announced it is closing the manufacturing plant by January 2010, a move that will cost 905 employees their jobs. The shutdown is part of a larger initiative by Dell to save $4 billion through cost-cutting measures.

North Carolina leaders want Dell to pay for shutting down a four-year-old PC manufacturing plant in their state.

Dell officials announced Oct. 7 that they were closing the plant in Winston-Salem, N.C., by January 2010, a move that will cost 905 employees their jobs. The closing is part of a company-wide initiative designed to cut costs and save Dell about $4 billion.

It is the same plant that Dell built after state and local government leaders promised Dell more than $300 million in tax breaks and other incentives to come to North Carolina. States routinely offer such incentives to businesses in hopes of enticing them to locate there.

After a talk Oct. 8, N.C. Gov. Beverly Perdue told local reporters that she was determined to ensure that the state gets back “every red cent back that Dell has received."

City and Forsythe County officials also are looking to get repayment from the PC maker.

A Dell spokesman has said the company will meet state and local officials to talk about incentive agreements, and that Dell will honor those agreements.

Dell is looking not only to reduce expenses, but also to remake itself. The company is still the worlds second-largest PC vendor, behind Hewlett-Packard, but is feeling the pressure from other OEMs, such as Acer, in a market that has been severely hit by the global recession. Research firm Gartner in June said overall PC shipments would decline this year by 6 percent over 2008, with desktop sales dropping 16 percent.

PC makers are hoping to see a boost in shipments later this year and into next as businesses refresh their aging fleets of computers. They also expect Microsoft’s release of its Windows 7 operating system this month to fuel sales.

Dell also is looking to grow its services business, as illustrated by its anticipated $3 billion purchase of Perot Systems, announced in September.

This is creepily familiar to Edmontonians, who remember stories like this (similar passages boldfaced):900 jobs affected as Dell closes Edmonton call centre:
Dell Inc. announced Thursday that it is closing its Edmonton call centre, a move that will affect more than 900 employees.

It's the second time in a week that computer company has announced cuts to operations in Canada. On Tuesday, Dell called off plans to create 1,200 new jobs in Ottawa and instead announced dozens of layoffs at a call centre in that city.

It also comes less than three years after the city lured the call centre with economic concessions.

Employees at the Edmonton call centre were told Thursday that all operations will shut down by May, said Dell employee Ken Smuda, who has only been with the company for five months.

"It's unfortunate," he said. "I was looking forward to a nice long career with this company and now here I am one of the people who is back on the streets looking again."

Edmonton Mayor Stephen Mandel said company officials informed the city about the decision Thursday morning.

"We knew it was coming but we didn't think it was to the degree it was," Mandel said.

He said he was told Dell is shutting down, in part, because it's having trouble attracting and keeping staff in Edmonton's tight labour market.

"Their turnover was so high they couldn't keep people trained well enough to keep the level of service up," Mandel said.

The city lured the call centre to the city in 2005 with a 20-year agreement to waive property taxes on the company's southside call centre, concessions worth $1.1 million for the first five years.

The city may be able to recoup some of that money, said Kenn Bur, director of communications for Economic Development Edmonton.

"There a number of scenarios and we have referred that to our legal counsel," he said.

Headquartered in Round Rock, Texas, Dell is in the middle of consolidating its global operations and cutting its costs. The company's stated goal is to cut about 10 per cent of its workforce.
Somehow I doubt that North Carolina's job market is so hot that Dell can't recruit staff, but they ended up losing the Dell facility anyways.

Okay, can these continual stories teach anybody a lesson?
  1. If a company wants to set up shop in your city, than welcome them with open arms and closed wallets.
  2. Don't trust Dell. Geesh, has nobody ever heard the ol' "fool me once" line?