Thursday, December 28, 2006

Compare and Contrast


Somali troops enter capital unopposed

Somalis cheer as military rolls in, ending six months of Islamist domination

From the Guardian:
Return of warlords as Somali capital is captured
· Islamists retreat in face of Ethiopian tanks
· Looting begins as control of city is reclaimed

Same story, different spin.

MSNBC has never been considered much of a conservative news agency, but they look positively right wing when compared to the Guardian.

I'm glad that the Islamic crazies had been routed from the capital, but this is a region of the world where "stability" isn't even found in the dictionary. Here's hoping the UN doesn't decide to get involved.

At least then the people there might have a fighting chance at freedom.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

RIP James Brown

(Bumped to top, December 27th)

In Memoriam... Now is that time at WCC when we dance:

James Brown has Died.

Too bad, he was one of the best entertainers of all time, and he was supposed to come to Prince George in January (link may be no good).

Plenty of online eulogies will no doubt begin with the words "Ow! I feel bad/dead"

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

RIP Gerald Ford

Gerald Ford has died.

Gerald R. Ford, who picked up the pieces of Richard Nixon's scandal-shattered White House as the 38th and only unelected president in America's history, has died, his wife, Betty, said Tuesday. He was 93.


"His life was filled with love of God, his family and his country.

Not much more needs to be said, I suppose, although I wonder how he would've fared as President if he had the same congress in the 1970's that George Bush had during his first term.

The New Blogger

So this is the New Blogger, eh?

I just received my "confirmation email", and everything seems to be working fine.

In other news, Team Canada won their first game at the World Junior Hockey Championships, and we won our first game at the Spengler Cup too!

Sweden has felt our wrath.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Vote For Rory

I'm a little late in posting about this, but I've been voting for Rory Fitzpatrick to go to the NHL All-Star Game. Back in October when I was at the Canucks/Capitals game, I snapped a picture of the Canucks bench, and much to my surprise, ol' Rory was standing up at the end of the bench! Click the images to enlarge:

Heh, Vote for Rory!

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Christmas Greetings

Merry Christmas, folks.

Go Canada Go.

Go Canada Go.

Go Canada Go.

This holiday season, I'll be thinking of others before myself :-)

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Seems Logical to Me.

Inevitably, the only way to rebalance the mission is to reduce the enemy.

Is it too late to nominate this for Quote of the Year?

Update: If you are in the market for some hockey sticks, may I suggest checking out Flarrow Hockey. When those folks support the troops, they really support the troops:

As luck would have it, Billing's father works for Flarrow Hockey -- a Canadian company that manufactures hockey sticks -- and when his boss found out about the special request, two hockey sticks bound for Kandahar, Afghanistan, became 50.

And these weren't just any sticks. Flarrow decided to manufacture a special "Support Our Troops" model: a flame-red hardwood shaft reinforced with fiberglass, graphite and Kevlar to ensure that the blade could stand the abuse.

"I thought it would be kind of neat if we did a special stick," said Denis Flarrow, owner of Flarrow Hockey. "It would mean more to the troops."

Flarrow then decided to take it one step further, producing 10,000 of the special "S.O.T. 2000" hockey sticks, emblazoned with the words "Support Our Troops" near the blade of the stick.

It brings a tear to my eye. Great job, Flarrow.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Operation Baaz Tsuka

Go kick some ass, boys.

On Saturday, an unknown number of leaflets were dropped over a widespread area of the Panjwaii district. There was no writing on the pamphlets since many Afghans cannot read. Instead, the message was simple: a picture of a dead Taliban member with an X through it.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Kerry going to Iraq

I wonder how the troops will welcome him.

Hopefully with a lot of signs and fanfare.

New Land Speed Record?

I'd like to go for a spin with this guy sometime:

VALPARAISO, Ind. - A teenager charged with driving 142 mph along a four-lane divided highway said he was speeding home so his parents wouldn't be mad at him for being late, police said.

Brandon D. Raap, 16, faces speeding and misdemeanor reckless driving charges and could have his license suspended, police said.

Suspended license? Misdemeanor charge? Screw that nonsense! Get this kid a contract with Newman-Haas or Team Penske.

It might be the fastest speed ever recorded on the northwestern Indiana county's roads, said Porter County sheriff's spokesman Sgt. Tim Emmons.

"Most people's cars won't go that fast," he said.

Raap told police he was late getting home and didn't want his parents to be angry, Deputy John Brubaker said in his report.

In the dark and late at night, no less! I'd trust this kid to drive me around anytime.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Punks rob Amish man

Here's hoping these two wastes of skin get what is coming to them:

Police say two men armed with a .50 caliber muzzleloading rifle held up an Amish buggy driver and made off with a pipe, tobacco and flashlight.

Gee, that's quite the loot! Next they'll be after anyone with Oneida cookware.

Sheriff's deputies say 19-year-old Levi Hershberger was driving his buggy along County Route 15 when a car pulled alongside him and two men inside asked if he had any drugs. He said he didn't and they drove off, only to come back and ask him again for drugs.


When the two men returned a second time, they told Hershberger they were undercover state troopers, police said, reports the Watertown Daily Times.

Deputies say the men forced Hershberger out of the buggy at gunpoint and searched the vehicle. Later, when Hershberger got home, the men drove into his driveway and he ran to a neighbor's to call police while the men woke his father and again demanded drugs.

Couple of real winners.

Both men have previously pleaded guilty to burglary charges and are on probation, reports the Watertown Daily Times.

Can they please receive more than a slap on the wrist?

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Bob Gainey's daughter

Oh no, how horrific:

HALIFAX -- The United States Coast Guard said today its search for Laura Gainey, 25, daughter of Montreal Canadiens general manager Bob Gainey, is at a crucial stage.

As of 9 a.m. this morning, Laura Gainey had been in the water 30 hours after being swept by a wave from the tall sailing ship Picton Castle in rough seas about 750 kilometres southeast of Cape Cod, Mass.


Dan Moreland, managing captain of the Picton Castle, said Laura Gainey was not believed to have been wearing a lifejacket at the time of the incident.

Wearing one is not standard practice for mates performing regular duties on deck, he said.

It was not known exactly what she was doing at the time she was swept away, but she might have been straightening sail lines or walking to the toilet room, he said.


Laura Gainey was an advanced apprentice on the ship, having trained on it for months.

She sailed from Cape Town, South Africa to Lunenburg, N.S. in May, then trained on it while in the Great Lakes this summer. The current trip departed Lunenburg Dec. 5, headed for St. George’s, Grenada.

Laura Gainey was to continue her training for five months before returning to Canada in May.

Laura Gainey, who battled drug addiction as a teenager after her mother died of a brain tunor(sic) when Laura was barely 10, had expressed an interest in sailing as a profession, Moreland said.

Even an experienced swimmer would have trouble after being in the water for 30 hours. Bob Gainey must be having a terrible time right now, not knowing her fate. Foxnews is saying that a person would succumb to hypothermia after 36 hours.

"She is hardworking, someone who wanted to turn her life around. She was passionate about sailing, loves it and worked very hard," he said. "She was no slouch."

There is nothing on the Habs website yet, but I'd expect them to put something up shortly. What a shame for such a fine young woman who had cleaned herself up and was succeeding in life.

Carter slams Canada

Jimmy Carter has thrust himself back into the spotlight recently with his new book "Palestine: Peace Not Apartheid". It's bad enough he goes around coddling terrorists and encouraging their "leaders", but now he's attacking Canada for withdrawing funds that would have gone to Hamas.

Former U.S. president Jimmy Carter says the decision by Canada and other nations to withhold money from the Hamas-led Palestinian government is "a crime."


"It's a crime against the people of Palestine," Carter told CBC News in an exclusive interview from New York.

"For Canada and others to punish the Palestinian people because they voted for their candidates of choice, I think is literally a crime."

I think the former President is literally a loon. If the Palestinians want Hamas to lead them so badly, then this is the result of having their candidates of choice in power. But it's obviously Canada's fault that the leadership of Hamas couldn't lead their way out of a wet paper bag. If they could, perhaps they'd consider finding ways of improving the lives of their people, rather than continually spitting vitriol and hatred at their neighbours.

But no, Carter needs to blame Canada, blame Canada...

"I deplore the Palestinian suicide bombings as much or more than anything than I do what Israel has done against the Palestinian people. It's horrible on both sides and should be eliminated. But you have to look at the facts."

He said that by the time Hamas was elected in January, the Palestinian authority had already been brought to bankruptcy and couldn't pay police officers, firefighters and government employees.

Or suicide bombers, or the families of suicide bombers, or contribute to the insurgency in Iraq, etc.
Carter seems to suggest that it is not Hamas' fault for the social woes in Palestine, and that they were voted in to pick up the pieces. But the fact is Hamas has funded terrorism, they have never truly renounced violence against Israel, and they have not done anything to improve the lives of average Palestinians.
They cannot be trusted to use our charitable funds in responsible and appropriate ways.

Even the leaders of the Democratic Party are distancing themselves from Carter:

Carter's latest book has drawn stern rebukes from current Democratic leaders such as House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democratic National Committee Chair Howard Dean.

"With all due respect to former president Carter, he does not speak for the Democratic party on Israel," Pelosi said in a statement.

This is certainly a positive thing, but I can't help but think that there are many Democrats who share Carter's views on the situation in the Middle East.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

The Vaunted Canadian Health Care System

Vaunted, or vaulted? I'd like to see it vaulted somewhere after I read stories like this one:

A 23-year-old single mom claims she was made to wait nearly two days at Surrey Memorial Hospital before doctors repaired her broken leg.

How impatient can that woman be! Why the big rush? I mean, it's not like her injury was life threatening.

Sandy Southwell says she broke her fibula in a fall on an icy sidewalk just before midnight Sunday. She was admitted to Surrey Memorial shortly after.

"They said my surgery would be in the morning [Monday]," Southwell said. But the hours dragged on and the operation to put a plate on the damaged bone was delayed.

I'm sure Sandy would have been willing to fork over some extra cash if it meant getting treatment in a timely manner. Or if her insurance coverage wasn't "universal" (read: lousy for everyone) perhaps she could have called her independent insurance company they could have found a way of getting her treated right away.

"I was getting scared," she said. "I felt like going to a different hospital, but what can I do. I was scared and shaking."
Southwell said doctors finally operated about 9:30 p.m. Tuesday.

Have you ever had a broken leg before? Here a fun game to play: break your leg, and then wait around for two days before you get it fixed! This could be the start of a Christmas tradition!

Lisa Thibault of the Fraser Health Authority insists Southwell was treated for her injuries within 24 hours of being admitted. But Southwell's mother (also named Sandy) disagrees.

"She called me at 9 o'clock Tuesday night and they told her she had to get off the phone because she was going into surgery," the elder Southwell said.

Earlier, Thibault had said a wait of two days for surgery to repair a broken leg is not abnormal.

A wait. Of two Days. To repair a broken leg. IS NOT ABNORMAL.

"More urgent cases would have been seen first," she said. Surrey Memorial's orthopedic caseload was stacked over the weekend with injuries caused by people falling in slippery conditions.

It's a pandemic! We need a study group! How about a governmental think tank that focuses on finding a treatment for this unexpected rash of slippery fallery.

Sandy Southwell's ordeal came just days after another patient, Susy Horna, described an excruciating four-day wait for broken-leg surgery at Surrey Memorial.

Southwell says she was hooked up to morphine and given painkillers but was fed only once -- a measly meal of soggy noodles, Jell-O and tiny sandwiches after her surgery.

Obviously this outbreak of Slippery-Fallery has caused a food shortage as well.

The next time someone pulls out the "40 millions Americans have no health care Insurance" line on you in an attempt to convince you of the wonders of socialized medicine, tell them they will get what they pay for.

Which is to say, "free" health care is anything but free.

Welcome Hawkins Readers!

Right Wing News has been a daily read of mine for nearly two years now. It's a little odd since I'm a Canadian and a lot of what John blogs about is about as relevant to me as polar bears are to African elephants.

At any rate, feel free to search around the ol' blog. The Red Ensign brigade on the right hand sidebar consists of several of my favourite (with a U) blogs, so please check some of 'em out.

And I wouldn't be too upset if you decided to check back tomorrow or the next day.

Friday, December 08, 2006

BAD Canucks Win!

In between heart attacks during the Canucks/Canes game tonight, I was enjoying the comment thread at Darcey's weekly Friday Night Blues & Beer. Over 200 comments, Wow!

I'm WAY far behind Darcey and the boys in the booze consumption department, but I'm starting this evening off right. Sleeman's Original Dark that I've been saving for just such an occasion as this. I'm not much for reviews but let me just say it tastes great. Tons of body and a flavour that hangs around, but won't wear out its welcome. Not to mention the cool Stella Glass I got last week free with a case...

Darcey will have petered out long before I've hit my stride :-) Nonetheless, I raise a glass to you all. May the National Beer Policy grow exponentially!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006


NDP leader Jack Layton made a small grammatical error during Question Period in the House of Commons yesterday. Hilarity ensues.

Nice to hear that Stephen Harper will get to the bottom of this pressing issue.

Pastor of Genocide released from prison.

Is there any justice in the world? Why should this man go free?

The Seventh Day Adventist clergyman was accused of personally driving Hutu attackers to places where Tutsis had taken refuge.


As a respected member of the Seventh Adventist Day Church, some fellow clergymen hiding in the complex sent him a letter begging him for help.

The letter asked him as a man of God to intercede.

"We wish to inform you that tomorrow, we will be killed along with our families," it read.

Instead, the pastor transported the attackers to the hospital complex and also ordered the roof of a church ripped off, so that the unarmed men, women and children inside could be more easily killed.

Emphasis mine.

And may I emphasize that I think this guy deserves a sound beating. And I'm sure the lions in the plains of Rwanda would enjoy feasting on his flesh.


Sunday, December 03, 2006

More Sunday Sadness

Oh geez, this is tragic. The poor family:

One witness said that the boy had been seated on the float with his feet dangling from the side and fell off when the trailer appeared to hit a bump in the road.

The boy landed in the path of the trailer's wheels and was run over...

What a terrible accident. The driver of the float must feel absolutely horrible.

Sunday Morning Sadness

This story saddened me quite a bit. "You just lost your route":

It’s the kind of holiday mail that might have been tossed aside, discarded like any other piece of junk mail: a special offer for a facial at a local spa.

Only the address on the letter no longer exists. And the woman the letter is addressed to died more than five years ago in the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center.


Rafael Feliciano delivered mail to floors 78 through 100 of the south tower for three years. He watched the tower collapse on television from a bar several blocks away with a co-worker.

“He turned to me and said, ’You just lost your route,”’ Feliciano recalled.