Christian Conservative Christian "Independent"

I'm an evangelical Christian, member of the CPC, but presently & unjustly exiled to wander the political wilderness.
All opinions expressed here are solely my own.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Why I’m endorsing Tim Hudak for ON PC Leader

I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking, discussing, and reading about the various leadership candidates for the Ontario PC Leadership, and I’ve finally made my decision… as of this moment, unless something HUGE changes things, I will be supporting MPP Tim Hudak to become the next leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservative Party.

When this leadership campaign began, I didn’t want to make any decisions right out of the gate, though I was approached pretty quickly by several members of the Hudak camp, individuals who I have a great deal of respect for.  I wanted to take my time, wanted to give all the candidates a chance to get their messages out, and to get a good read of the candidates and their campaigns before I made my choice.

I had the chance to talk to Randy Hillier personally, for which I have to give him a lot of credit… how often does a candidate reach out to someone who’s been such a vocal opponent?  It was HIGHLY unlikely that I was ever going to support him, but he made the effort anyway.  Good show Randy.  Unfortunately, I think selecting him as our leader would be highly damaging to our electoral prospects in both the near and distant futures, and as such, I am encouraging everyone I know not to support his bid.  It is my opinion that Randy would be too far of a pendulum swing to the right for us to be a viable alternative government for the general public… no matter how appealing to the inner-conservative some of his policies might be.

Frank Klees, unfortunately, was never a serious contender in my opinion.  His campaign appeared to be more of an afterthought than anything, and appeared rather disorganized from the get-go.  I’ve since gotten an e-mail from a local organizer whom I highly respect, and was given some good food for thought to consider voting for him, but as a “pragmatic” So-Con, I do not feel that Frank is capable of winning a General Election… which makes his candidacy a non-starter for me.

Then we come down to what I must say has been the most impressive campaign thus far, the Elliott campaign.  And note that I say “campaign” as opposed to “candidate”.  I think the team that Christine has surrounded herself with is phenomenal, and they’ve run perhaps the best campaign of them all.  Their “presence”, which is essential for any campaign, was roaring right out of the gate, and they really had their act together.  Her “Path to Victory” document was impressive too, laying out many of the steps we need to undertake to ensure we’re ready to take on McGuinty’s Liberals in 2011.  And their office has been working HARD to get their message out.  They were the first ones with their call centre up and running, and I’ve gotten a few calls from them, seeking to make sure my membership was up to date, (I had let it lapse) with their staff asking good and pointed questions to get me to really consider where I was putting my support.  And of course, their fundraising machine was just that… a MACHINE.  It’s my sincere hope that regardless of the outcome of this leadership campaign, that the eventual winner ensures that the folks running Christine’s campaign have a big say in the 2011 Election campaign.

However, you’ll notice I’ve been talking about the team, and not Christine herself.  Not to knock her, but to be perfectly honest, I still don’t know much about her.  I never got to go to her events, and I’ve missed the debates so far, so I really don’t know who she is, or where she stands on the issues.  So I’ve not decided on who my second choice is going to be, but at present, Christine is my leading contender.  So depending on how the last few weeks of the campaign goes, and what I get to know about Christine as a person, who knows… I may even be issuing another post, retracting this one and issuing a new endorsement.  Or maybe I’ll get to meet her, and decide to issue another post giving my second vote support to someone else… who knows.

But in the meantime, I’ve decided to finally indicate where my support is presently leaning… and that’s with Tim Hudak.

From the get-go, Tim has personally impressed me the most.  To be honest, he strikes me as the one who has the best “Premier” presence of all the candidates.  As a younger candidate, he has lots of room to “grow” over the next couple of years, and strikes me as the only one who could go toe-to-toe with the carefully crafted “working man” image that the Liberals have endeavoured to give Dalton McGuinty.  And make no mistake… it’s just an “image”.  You know, the no-tie, and/or the rolled up sleeves he has at almost every event… total stage-management.

LOL… and we interrupt this endorsement to mention that the Klees Campaign just called me thirty seconds ago, looking for my support.  Sorry guys, as I said, just a little too late out of the gate.  Now back to our endorsement…

Now where were we… ah yes, the fall of Dalton McGuinty.  If Tim wins the leadership, he may well end up like Dalton McGuinty, and very well may not win his first round in 2011.  As we’re a year and a half late beginning our Leadership race, (it’s well known that I said it should have started in London in February of 2008) there may simply not be enough time to mount an effective campaign to replace the Liberals.  However, I firmly believe that it is entirely possible that even if the Liberals win in 2011, Tim is the right man to lead the charge and hold the McGuinty Liberals to minority.  In my opinion, any means to reduce their clout in Queen’s Park is a good thing.

That being said, I'm starting to think that with each passing day, that it's more and more likely that we're going to have a real shot at replacing Mr. McGuinty in 2011, and it's not because of anything I'm hearing from within conservative circles... it's with what I'm hearing from the "general public". Like my conversation with one guy today, who's pretty much as non-conservative as you get. He typically votes Green, and is certainly more left in his worldview than myself, but he was talking to me and started railing against the new HST today... totally out of the blue, on his own initiative. And this is a guy who NEVER talks politics unless I bring it up. So I'm thinking to myself "Wow, if THIS guy is ticked at Dalton over the HST, the Liberals are in SERIOUS TROUBLE come 2011..." Like I said, when politicians get people who never talk about politics ticked off, they've got serious problems. And I think Tim's the only one who can put together a serious alternative government to the people of Ontario.

But in order to have a hope of forming government, you have to have internal party unity, something we haven't had in quite a while. I believe that only Tim can truly wear the “bridge builder” badge within the Party.  Christine has a good portion of the old “Tory” camp, Randy has the far-right wing sown up, and Frank has a large chunk of the “So-Con” vote.  But Tim?  From my chair, I see Tim as having a truly “grassroots” and broad based level of support.  Of the folks I know, he’s got some of the So-Cons, some of the “Red Tories”, a whole whack of the fiscal conservatives, and one more important group… the “Harris” Tories, of which I would consider myself a member... that all important group that essentially has been sitting on their hands since Ernie Eves took over in 2002. (Hey Mike, we miss you!) Yes, I was pretty much sitting on my hands on the Provincial side ever since then.  But folks?  With Tim’s campaign, there’s an interesting energy and spark that I’ve not seen in a long time.  Thanks in large part to Tim and his campaign, I’d have to say that I’m back.

And then there’s the personal touch that Tim has brought to the campaign, and I think that’s what really got me when we met.  He’s got that same charisma that many have said Mulroney had, where he remembers everything about you, and really seems to care when he’s talking to you.  When he realized who I was in the blogging world, he immediately jumped into a deep conversation about the content of many things I’d been asking and talking about over the previous weeks.  He’d actually taken the time to read what I’d said, and commented on it in a manner that indicated that he’d actually READ and thought about what I’d said.  Then, within a few days, I noticed him take action on our conversation.  He didn’t just TALK, he ACTED… and that’s what we need in a new leader.  That was one of my biggest problems with John Tory’s leadership… he and his team acted as if they knew everything.  When I was on a conference call with Mr. Tory the one time, I put forward some of the thoughts that I’d been sensing from the grassroots, and my comments were dismissed by John out of hand, without even a moments consideration of what I’d said.  Well as we saw in the by-election, my comments were EXACTLY correct, and had they been heeded, the outcome might have been different.

But with Tim, the attitude is COMPLETELY different.  The following week after we’d met, he called me up out of the blue, just to let me know about an upcoming event, and letting me know that he would be giving a speech dealing with several of the very things we’d been talking about.  There’s an openness and responsiveness about Tim that’s a breath of fresh air, and I think the one thing that can save this Party from imploding upon itself, and from giving Dalton McGuinty and his Liberals a free ride in the 2011 election.

So there you have it, my endorsement, and some of the disjointed reasoning behind it all.  I think Tim Hudak is the best person to take over the leadership of this Party, and the Premiership of Ontario.

Go get’em Tim!

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Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Memo to GG Michelle Jean: You ROCK

I take back anything and everything negative I've ever said about Governor General Michelle Jean, after she stuck it to the European Union, along with nutbars at PETA and the Animal Alliance Environment Voters Party of Canada today by taking a bite out of a raw seal heart in Nunavut.

Don't think I could do it... props to the GG!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Ruby spends QP picking 10%ers?

It's funny the perspective on things you get when sitting in Question Period. For example... I'm willing to bet that the cameras didn't pick up on Ruby Dhalla flipping through samples of the new Liberal 10%ers, (which look surprising identical to the Tory ones they've been complaining about for years) deciding on which one she's going to send out in her name to some Conservative held riding. If anyone get the one she finally decided on, let me know and send me a pic while you're at it.

And I'm willing to bet that the cameras didn't pick up on the ridiculous antics of the Liberal Opposition, those supposedly "dignified" folks who would NEVER stoop to the "childish" antics of the Tories! Ralph and Bob, seriously, a "high-five" during Question Period? What, are we like in high school or something? Seriously, I really expected to see more childish antics from the Tory side, but no, it was from the "dignified" Liberals.

Marlene Jennings? I've always disliked her ideology, but I had more respect for her yesterday than I do now, with her talking over answers, pointing, repeatedly yelling at the Tories "You're just a bunch of colonialists!" over issues relating to Native Affairs. Excuse me Marlene? Just because we don't believe in throwing endless streams of money at issues without a shred of oversight doesn't mean we're seeking to "impose" our ideology on First Nations peoples. My sincere hope is that we are able to help all First Nations peoples set up REAL self-government set up within their communities, instead of continuing to support the Liberal kingpins who you've always siphoned money to, who make sure that their "community" keep voting Liberal election after election. Just who's the "Colonialist" Marlene, us who want to help ALL First Nations people, or you who just want to keep paying them off to make sure they keep voting Liberal? Try putting together a coherent response to that Marlene, and maybe you'll earn back some measure of the respect that I previously had for you. I know that's a much harsher and more direct tone than I normally take here on this blog, but I was disgusted and offended by her immature display today, truly disgusted. I may even write a formal letter to her and to the Speaker on that one, we'll see how I feel next week.

Then there was Michael Ignatieff, Mr. "Dignified" himself... heckling away with the best, err, I mean worst of them. Come on dude... and I know it's so beneath you to partake in these undignified venues, but would you please at least pretend not to look bored out of your skull and stop playing with your earpiece cord for at least a second? Seriously, I saw the guy spend most of Question Period twisting and twirling his earpiece cord, not paying the slightest attention for most of it. Then he jetted long before things were over, of course. The least you could be doing, oh man who wants to run the country, is spend the time going over some briefing notes or something, at least TRY to look engaged in the democratic process.

The NDP was quite entertaining, I must say. They asked serious and pointed questions, they at least LOOKED like they weren't just out to score points. One of them, not sure who it was, had a really great zinger on the Liberals too. Baird was responding to a question, and he threw in some crack along the lines of "Well, it looks like the Liberals are getting their economic advice from the NDP", to which one of the NDP shot out, "That's what we've been doing all along!", obviously in reference to the NDP/Goodale Napkin Budget of 2005, and to the recent leftist shift by the Liberals in the last couple of years. It was pretty funny anyway, it got a laugh on both sides of the isle... though not so much from the Liberals, mind you.

Anyway, it was an interesting time, none the less. Was nice seeing some familiar faces, and I also got to sit in on the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage, where the whole "local content" issue was being discussed in connection with the CRTC. Interesting, and I discovered that it's really true, it's not just on TV, but even in real life, Pablo Rodriguez is just a showboating idiot... but that's for another discussion.

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On the ground in Ottawa

My compliments to the folks at WestJet for a nice flight. Smoothest landing I've ever experienced too.

Georgeous day to be in the Nation's Capital. Here on business, but taking some time for fun while I'm here. Will be up on the Hill, so if you're a reader and see me (come on, fess up, I see all you Hill staffers hitting my page on a daily basis) make sure you say "Hi". Tory, Liberal, Dipper, doesn't matter to me. You guys are all up there slogging away everyday, and regardless of your Party affiliation, you have some measure of my respect.

I don't bite, promise.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Liberals sending out Tory-esque 10%ers

Well what do you know? All those Tory 10%ers the Liberals have been complaining about? Well they've finally followed suit, and are sending out photocopied 10%ers just like the Tories! I just got one in my mailbox today!

So, if I EVER hear a Liberal complaining about them again, I'll just refer them to Liberal Caucus Services.

Yea, as ususal... hypogrits.

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Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Tori Stafford story hits too close to home

The latest headlines in the Tori Stafford case are hitting way too close to home... according to some reports, police are searching the area for her body mere blocks from my office, after two arrests were made for her murder last night. A press conference is scheduled for 3:00pm today.

And it's hitting me in a way I never would have expected... pretty hard. My thoughts and prayers go out to her family now more than ever.

UPDATE: I've got a source who lives out in Rockwood who told me that while the initial searches were near my office, the police then moved to the Rockwood area. Apparently they've set up a massive command centre at the firehall out there, (from an eyewitness report) and CityTV has an unconfirmed report that Tory's body has been found there.


Saturday, May 16, 2009

Funny YouTube shot at Iggy

LOL... you gotta love the inclusion of "Hail to the Chief" at the end of the video!

That photo of Martin speaking into Iggy's ear is a money shot for this clip, totally makes it. And it's nice to see that totally baseless attack of Martin's against Harper form the 2006 election get tossed right back at the Liberals! LOL.

h/t to Dr. Roy

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Ubuntu 9.04 NBR on my EeePC 701 (4G)

Wow, I'm liking Ubuntu Linux more and more... and more!

Have been playing with it on my HP dv9000 laptop for a while now, and I love it. It's quick, has all the major tools I need, and hasn't crashed once. (which is more than I can say about my Vista on that same laptop... still waiting to hear from Microsoft on if they'll let me upgrade to Windows 7, to prevent me from making the switch completely)

So anyway, now that Ubuntu 9.04 is out of Beta and has been fully released, I decided to give the 9.04 NetBook Remix (NBR) a whirl on my EeePC 701, for 4GB SSD model. Seriously, if I can summerize my feelings with one word, it would be "WOW". The thing loaded up without a hitch, all the drivers were loaded flawlessly, and the thing now rocks... WAY better than with the EeePC's default Linux distro. There was one glitch where the mouse was jumpy, but that was solved quickly by running "gconf-editor" from the terminal, and going to "apps > netbook-launcher" and checking the "force low graphics" option. (as the 701's don't have the most beefy specs of the NetBook market) A quick reboot, and life was good.

Didn't take long at all to get it rigged up to use my new SSL-VPN for work. Just had to install the Java6 runtime, and then download and install an RDP client. Getting new programs for Ubuntu is smooth, most of the apps are available through the "Add/Remove Programs" menu, and they download and install in a jiff.

In all honesty, Ubuntu 9.04 is the first Linux I've seen that has a real serious shot at chipping away into some of Microsoft's market share. It's been nearly 10 years since I played with Linux, so I'm really rusty, (and I was never that good with it anyway) but it's been a total breeze to get it running on my systems. I now have it running on 4 systems, a desktop at home, a VMWare server at work, my main laptop and this EeePC, from which I'm writing right now. Oh, did I mention that the wireless worked right out of the box?

Seriously, if you're thinking about reinstalling your Windows because it's been slow lately, give Ubuntu 9.04 a try. If you're primarily using your computer for e-mail, internet and word processing, Ubuntu's got everything you need!

Download the ISO, burn a disk, and give it a whirl! You can actually test it out without installing it, the CD will boot up into a "Live" environment on it's own, and will give you a fully functional desktop OS that's running right off the CD... no installation required. That's how I gave it a test drive on all my systems first, which was great because it was totally risk free. Like I said though... I really think I've crossed the bridge, and have made the move to Ubuntu.

See ya later Billy G!!! (though you still got me on the server side... Microsoft's Server 2003 R2 is just a rock solid and stable product, and Microsoft's DPM has saved my butt a few times over, so I'm not likely to switch on the server side, at least not yet...)

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Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Self-described "American"? www.ignatieff.ME

Ouch... good luck wrapping yourself in the Canadian flag there Michael."You have to choose what kind of America you want, right? YOU have to decide. It's your country, just as much as it is MINE" - Michael Ignatieff

Captain Canada? Me thinks not.

Sorta like my spoofed pic from the other week...

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Monday, May 11, 2009

Iggy negoitating with terrorists?

Well, maybe the Tamils aren't toting guns in Toronto, but using kids as human shields against the police? Come on guys, that one's straight out of the Terrorist Handbook... humm, just like in Sri Lanka, where the Tigers are using human shields against government forces. Well what do you know? Looks like they are indeed playing from the same Handbook.

But the protest itself is actually the SECONDARY issue here, and is NOT my biggest concern. The Tamils do indeed have a right to protest, though not illegally as they have been recently. But the fact that the Tamils are protesting in Toronto, blocking major highways and using human shields ISN'T actually the biggest issue to this story. The biggest, and by far the most disconcerting aspect to this story, is the response by Liberal Opposition Leader Michael "Iggy" Ignatieff.

I'd like to take you on a bit of a mental journey. Try with me, for just a brief nightmarish moment, and imagine that somehow, the Liberals have managed to win the next election. (like I said, it's a nightmarish senario, but bare with me for a moment) Michael Ignatieff is now the Prime Minister, and is safely hunkered down within the PMO. Taking a page from the Toronto Tamil playbook of May 2009, another group of protesters decide that their voice isn't being heard loudly enough, and decide to call up the Prime Minister using their new speed dail option... #401. No answer? Dial a second number... #403. Still no answer? They also decide to dial up #407.

Okay, now snap out of that nightmare. Are you getting the picture yet? By responding to the Tamil protest last night, the man who wants to become Prime Minister of this country just told protesters everywhere that the way into his office is by simply blocking the economic arteries of our nation.

Iggy, that's NOT how a Canadian Prime Minister handles himself. And it's yet another reason you've just proven that you're not up to the big job.

For those of you who are thinking of voting Liberal next time around, be forewarned... Shawn Brant and the boys down in Caledonia just LOVE the idea of Iggy winning the next election.

UPDATE: Before folks get too hot under the collar, let me fill you in a little more on my experience with the Tamil Tigers. (as posted in my comments section) Again, the illegal actions of the Tigers here in Toronto is not the main thrust of my post, my focus is on the inappropriate response from Michael Ignatieff. But as for my views on the Tigers, let me share with you some insight...

While I have no intention of attempting to "justify" the actions of the Sri Lanken government, let me provide all of you with a little more insight into my personal views on the Tamil Tigers.

There's one organization in this world that has better access to what's really going on than even the international media... it's the Church. While media organizations have been complaining of not being able to get their people in, I've heard reports from right there on the ground.

Some time ago, we were getting reports of serious human rights violations that were being perpetrated on innocent civilans, both Christian and non-Christian alike. Reports of hundreds of people seeking food and shelter within churches all along the frontier. But it wasn't the Sri Lanken military that was killing civilians and causing these people to flee their homes... it was the Tamil Tigers.

So you see, I have very little sympathy for their cause. I also have a much greater confidence in the reports coming from the Sri Lanken government, because I know for a fact that the Tigers and their supporters lie. If Sri Lanka's government says their keeping casualties as low as possible, then I rationally assume that any casualties that are occuring are being directly caused by the tactics being employed by the Tamil Tigers. Of course, I know full well that there's a lot of misinformation that occurs within the "fog of war", but due to my past experience with the lies of the Tigers, I don't tend to believe a single word out of their mouths.

So, perhaps now you can see it from my perspective a little better. If I find you've lied to me, I'm not likely to trust you in the future. That's what's happened to the Tamils here in Toronto... the lies of their side have been exposed, and I simply don't believe them anymore.

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Wednesday, May 06, 2009

NHL Cyotes to KW?


Sign the petition to "Make it Seven" (seven NHL teams in Canada)
Balsillie offers $212.5M to bring Coyotes to Ontario
Last Updated: Wednesday, May 6, 2009 | 1:04 AM ET

Jim Balsillie confirmed Tuesday that he has offered to pay $212.5 million US to purchase the Phoenix Coyotes on the condition that the bankrupt team relocate to southern Ontario.

Balsillie, 48, made the offer to Coyotes majority owner Jerry Moyes, consenting to buy it if he can move it, presumably to Hamilton or the Kitchener-Waterloo region, where he runs Research In Motion Ltd., maker of the popular BlackBerry mobile device.

Balsillie also agreed to provide $17 million US in bridge financing to keep the Coyotes operating in advance of the proposed sale.

"The current team ownership asked that I table an offer to purchase the Coyotes, and significant discussions resulted in an offer that is in the best interests of the franchise, the NHL and the great hockey fans of Canada and southern Ontario," Balsillie said in a statement.

"I am excited to move closer to bringing an NHL franchise to what I believe is one of the best unserved hockey markets in the world — southern Ontario — a market with devoted hockey fans, a rich hockey history, a growing and diversified economy and a population of more than seven million people."

Team ownership formally filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on Tuesday, at which time the Balsillie bid came to light.

A bankruptcy hearing reportedly is scheduled for Thursday.

"Obviously, the focus is the courts have to make a decision on the offer that I have made," Balsillie told reporters Tuesday in Toronto.

"It is a firm offer, it is a supported offer and the place I want to move the team to is in an unserved market in southern Ontario … but clearly, we believe there is a great opportunity there."

"It is the owner's decision whether to file for bankruptcy and we provided our support, or our offer, our financing into it, so really this is in response to events that happened," Balsillie explained. "We're responding to events and this is a very serious and committed offer by me — it is funded and financed and fully backed."
NHL relieves Moyes of duties

The NHL reacted swiftly, responding to the petition for sale and relieving Moyes of his duties with the Coyotes.

"We have just become aware of today's bankruptcy court filing purportedly made on behalf of the Phoenix Coyotes," NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly said in a statement.

"We are investigating the circumstances surrounding the petition, including the propriety of its filing. We have removed Jerry Moyes from all positions of authority to act for or on behalf of the club."

A spokesman for the city of Glendale, Ariz., where the team's arena is located, told reporters last week that the NHL had assumed control of the Coyotes and that the team ownership paid $351,000 US in overdue rent on Feb. 25 — reportedly after receiving a unspecified loan from the league.

"Extensive efforts have been undertaken to sell the team or attract additional investors who would keep the team in Glendale," Moyes told the Arizona Republic.

Moyes told the newspaper that the court process will attach a new owner and location to the Coyotes by June 30, but the sale of the franchise will still need league approval.

"The league will appear and proceed before the bankruptcy court in the best interests of all the club's constituencies, including its fans in Arizona and the league's 29 other member clubs," Daly said.
Tried to purchase Penguins, Predators

Balsillie tried twice before to buy an existing NHL franchise and relocate it in Hamilton, only to have both efforts fall through.

He struck a tentative agreement to purchase the Pittsburgh Penguins for $175 million US three years ago, but the offer was dissolved because NHL commissioner Gary Bettman intervened and reportedly imposed restrictions that would keep the team in Pittsburgh.

Balsillie later agreed to purchase the Nashville Predators for $238 million US from Craig Leipold in 2007, and started a season-ticket drive in Hamilton when Leipold had second thoughts and scuttled the deal.

Leipold later sold the Predators for $193 million US and bought a 51 per cent majority stake in the Minnesota Wild.

Balsillie contacted Buffalo Sabres owner Tom Golisano last year about the possibility of purchasing the franchise and, though receptive to a potential offer, Golisano preferred the team stay put in western New York.

Balsillie is seeking the support of Canadians in his bid to buy and relocate the Coyotes on a website called, referring to the possibility of a seventh NHL team in Canada.