File under kind of weird but probably not surprising

It takes about an hour on open roads to drive from 100 Huntley Street to the Circle Square Ranch.

When I visited a friend in Hamilton a few years ago and I wanted to go on Wayne Gretzky Drive (Brantford edition) I remember surprise when we saw the sign for Circle Square Ranch on the drive back.

Curiously enough, 100 Huntley Street is right by a condo pool party I got to attend on the infamous #FACLCexploresToronto trip in 2011, though I unfortunately didn't know it at the time.

100 Huntley Street might be where the first broadcast of the famous show took place, but it's worth noting that Crossroads Christian Communications, who runs the show, is actually based in Burlington (near the IKEA) and a mere 37km from Circle Square.


@moaltan - If only Red Injun Day was shorter, you'd have less time to lie about Residential Schools

David Frum noted yesterday, with 100% accuracy, that despite the whiny claims of Red Indian activists, none of the "massacred bodies" that they and Moronaltan here keep claiming exist have turned up in any of the locations they insist they must be.

Note that Frum didn't even apologize for Residential Schools (as longtime readers no, he shouldn't even have to, the schools themselves were awesome and deserve to be praised, not vilified), just by pointing out the truth he was suddenly an "apologist" and even, apologies to George Orwell, a "denier".

"The massacres of indigenous kids" is itself a denial, a belief without evidence. The much-vaunted and misnamed "Truth and Reconciliation Commission" can't even decide on the number of deaths, let alone attributing a single one to a "massacre" or even for that matter "deliberate killing". If you look at the student memorial register (more on them in a minute) then the total number of deaths is 1,953 with another 477 unknowns, and then another 1,242 unidentified. That gives us a maximum of 3,672. Yet the official TRC final report includes this paper claiming 3,213 deaths [pdf], without explaining where the extra 459 kids disappeared to. You'd think squaring this circle would be a key part of a "truth" and reconciliation process, but apparently not. The footnote in the article references the TRC's 2014 "registry of confirmed deaths", but the final report only had 3,195 (1242+1953) "confirmed deaths" which means they discovered 18 "confirmed deaths"...weren't confirmed? How the hell do you do that?

However, another problem quickly arises: if we have 1953 deaths and 477 unknowns, who are the 1242 "unidentified"? Does that mean we're looking at 3,195 gravesites and we only have names associated with 61% of them? Isn't it possible the 477 unknowns are all subsumed within the 1242 graves whose inhabitants are unknown? It's possible that all 477 unknowns are themselves buried elsewhere (or unlikely but possibly still alive), but that still means that after years of this process we don't know how many dead kids we're actually talking about: and we still don't have any evidence the cause of death was "massacred".

We have another wrinkle though: the student memorial registry in 2019 released the names of the 2,800 names of students who died in Residential Schools, while noting that another 1600 "unnamed" children are thought to have died: bringing the number anywhere from 2800-4400 which sure may be a range containing 3195 and 3213 and 3672, but if there's only 2800 names then does that mean that the 1242 graves miraculously turned into zero and the 477 became 847 (2800-1953)? Yet the TRC "final report" maxed the number out at 3672, where did these other 728 (4400-3672) kids come from and how did the TRC final report miss them? Shouldn't they reconvene and check again? Oh, and by the way the student registry now contains 4135 names (at least it's not higher than 4400!) which means since the TRC final report identified 1953 dead kids another 2,182 children were identified. That's weird, isn't it?

So let's look into the methodology of the student memorial registry...oh, no, wait, we can't. They won't tell anybody their methods and won't investigate any anomolies.

Wait, what?

The list includes the name of Helen Betty Osborne, the 19-year-old victim of a despicable murder in 1971 near The Pas.

Betty, as she was known, had earlier attended the Guy Hill Indian Residential School, but at the time of her death was attending Margaret Barbour Collegiate and living in The Pas with a non-Indigenous family.

Since Betty Osborne was not attending an Indian residential school when she died, the inclusion of her name contradicts the claim that the Memorial Register is a reliable record of “Children Who Never Returned Home” from residential schools.

These facts moved one concerned Canadian to ask the NCTR why Betty Osborne’s name is included in the Memorial Register.

After more than three months had gone by, the NCTR senior archivist sent this reply:

The Memorial Register is the result of over a decade of work by countless people and honours the children lost to the residential schools. Many names are added at the request of family members of children they lost who attended residential school. It may be the wish of these families to memorialize their lost children among the names of their schoolmates. This memorial registry is one meant to help Survivors (whose friends were lost) and families (whose children were lost) honour their loss and find peace to move forward. Again this register is meant to memorialize and honour the loss that families felt and continue to feel due to the residential school system.
As we are continuing our efforts on residential school research and helping Survivors and their families to heal, we will not be replying to further questions on the registry.

In other words, we already have one documented case of a fraudulent entry on the registry and an assurance by the people in charge of it that they have not and never will take any action to verify the accuracy of their list. Which means, of course, that 100% of the entries on the list have to be considered suspect.

We can't examine how they came up with the list, but it is a list of names, right? So presumably we could independently try to followup. And indeed, somebody did:

BC death certificates which have been in the NCTR’s possession since 2014, for example, record that a child named on the NCTR Memorial Register died when hit by a CPR train on his home reserve during the summer holidays, that another child died in a house fire on her home reserve, that yet another died after being hit by a falling tree on his home reserve, and that another drowned miles off the West Coast during the summer holidays. These four children cannot in any realistic sense be referred to as “children who died in schools,” nor can it be claimed that they are “missing” or that they “never returned home,” since according to their BC death certificates they were buried on their home reserves.

In fact, a private researcher has found BC death records for 225 of the 416 children on the NCTR’s lists for “children who died at schools” in BC, which establish that most did not die at residential schools at all, and most are buried on their home reserves. In some cases the death certificates are signed by parents. The researcher has provided this information to the NCTR – which, as noted, was already aware of it since it has had the relevant BC death records in its possession since 2014. But requests that the NCTR remove from the Memorial Register the names of two hundred children whose deaths were not related to their attendance at residential schools have been met with silence.

The NCTR also declines to make accessible to non-Indigenous researchers the millions of documents it has received from governments and churches, which is particularly troubling since the NCTR is largely funded by the federal government with taxpayers’ money and is currently asking for a $60 million building to house its work. In that context, the senior archivist’s statement that the Centre refuses to reply to further questions is quite problematic. It suggests that the NCTR will continue to mislead the Canadian public by implying that the names in its Memorial Register are verified deaths which took place at residential schools, and that it will continue to place obstacles in the way of non-Indigenous researchers who are merely trying to establish the true number of residential school deaths.

Not only do we not have any evidence of a "massacre", we have reason to believe that a large proportion of the names don't actually belong there. So how many kids did die in the schools? Bear in mind that for half the students, they could elude the private researcher by getting married and therefore not having their original last name.

So some people have taken it upon themselves to try and correct the record. The Indian Residential Schools Record website is setup to try and actually document who died at the schools and when. For example, in Hobbema on New Years Day 1938 Mary (Marie) Lightning died at the age of 9 years, 7 months. How exactly was she "massacred"? With pneumonia. Man those nuns have a direct line to The Lord, don't they?

That was my non-massacred example. Does anybody care to dig into the death records and find an example that states otherwise?


Your search results for "AfterMASH was a real TV show right" yields 0 results

I read this today and my first thought was "when did Loretta Swit die? I don't remember that".

So I checked (using Bing, oddly enough) and found that she is in fact very much alive. I understand this is a relatively minor story compared to "AI invented sex controversies featuring overweight columnists" or "AI invented wholly fictional historical figures" but it's still kind of weird. I barely remember Bayliss, don't remember Straminsky at all, and if I fuzzily think about it I might have seen the pilot where a different actor played Mulcahy but I wouldn't guarantee it.

"Hot Lips" is a phrase that's instantly recognizable as M*A*S*H (indeed probably the only one), and you forgot she existed?


If only it stopped at the first lie

Editor's Note: this blogpost was caught up in Draft status and never published. Now, eight years after the planned publication date, here is the post. You can see that Red Indian activists never stopped lying and the lack of pushback from this first one simply emboldened them.

The first lie from the "Truth" and Reconciliation Commission has hit the ground running.

The Alberta government is overhauling the school curriculum to incorporate recommendations from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to ensure students learn about the legacy of abuse.

Provincial officials do not have a timeline for the changes, but say work has already started.

"There is about a half a page within the Grade 10 text book, information about residential schools so they don't go into depth about it. It's not enough," said Amanda Gould, First Nation, Metis and Inuit liaison for students at an Edmonton school.
Half a page about Residential Schools is already too much. Children should be learning about real things, not about a bunch of complainers from an undeveloped child race who are upset that corporal punishment used to exist in boarding schools.