The most disturbing expression of this government’s relativism is what one might call its relativization of knowledge. That it could casually dismiss the unanimous expert opposition to the bill, without bothering to offer a rebuttal, shows contempt not just for those involved but for the whole concept of expertise. Experts can sometimes get it wrong, of course, even where they are agreed. But the insinuation here is that they are wrong because they are experts, of which their very unanimity is further proof.
That way lies madness, as we saw in the long-form census “debate.” It takes us into a partisan Bizarro World, where the more indefensible the policy is, the more it must be correct — for the more universal the expert dissent it arouses, the more this is taken as evidence, not that the policy is crazy, but of a kind of academic class hatred of the Harper government.
That’s one possible explanation, certainly. The other is that it’s crazy.
Rather than “reaching out” to Canadians, political parties have been busy dividing the population into likely and unlikely voters; lists of friends and enemies. They now have the technology and the databases to do that sorting in an extremely sophisticated way.
It’s resulted in a world of absolutes, where you’re either 100 per cent right or 100 per cent wrong. The conversation, if it can be called that, consists of people yelling past each other and drive-by insults to the intelligence of anyone who doesn’t agree entirely with the team.
Who wants to live that way? Are we surprised that so few Canadians want to join political parties — or even listen to them?
Damn good question from Susan Delacourt, and succinct anaylsis of how and why public discourse has gotten so debased. And the attendant civic disengagement.
If the Internet has taught us anything, it’s that Rob Ford’s politics don’t belong on YouTube. They belong in YouTube comments.
Obama At National Prayer Breakfast: Religion Twisted To Justify Anti-Gay Rhetoric - On Top Magazine | Gay news & entertainment
Yo, Charles McVety? Stick this in your pipe. Homophobic asshole.
Five years after a global recession knocked the wind out of Canada’s labour market, throwing tens of thousands of workers onto the unemployment line and sidelining a generation of young workers, the compensation of Canada’s CEO elite continues to sail along.
By 1:11pm on January 2, the first official working day of the year, Canada’s top 100 CEOs have already pocketed $46,634 — what it takes most Canadians an entire year, working full-time, to earn.*
Move along, nothing to see here …
So long as police officers choose to wear the badge, they must comply with their duties and responsibilities under the regulation, even if this means at times having to forego liberties they would otherwise enjoy as ordinary citizens.
Read in the full light of its history and context, it is apparent, for three reasons, that the regulation was not meant to permit officers to consult with counsel before they complete their notes.
But when we come to the arbitrary measures pursued by Mr. Harper and his acolytes, we are faced with an issue that should worry Canadians. Ms. Wallin paints a picture that is Nixonian in its sheer viciousness.
"I’m saying, if the President does it, it’s not illegal!"
" … prostitutes, pansies and punks … "
— Tom Robinson Band, Power in the Darkness.
True in 1978. True now.
Yesterday Statistics Canada published a nice counterpoint to part of the relentless drumbeat against public employees by organizations like the Fraser Institute and the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB). Last December the CFIB published a report noting the horrifying finding that when it came to sick, disability and personal days off, public sector workers averaged 12.9 days compared to 8.2 days in the private sector. The report suggested the difference was “pure entitlement.” The CFIB said provisions should be aligned with the private sector and that accumulation of sick days should be eliminated or limited for public sector employees. The September 19 edition of the Statistics Canada Daily, however, suggests there just might be a reason for the difference in sick leave use.
Well, then. Gentlemen! We must kneecap StatsCan and hamstring its ability to research and present inconvenient facts!
Oh, wait …
(h/t Erika Shaker and Trish Hennessy)
Video: CBC is on about the royal baby … again …