In politics today, baloney baffles brains!

Bullshit baffles brains!
Baloney baffles brains!

I am sure that a lot of Canadians and Americans, whether moderate liberal or conservative, understand my post title: “Baloney baffles brains.”

Unlike any other time in my life, have I been faced with a political establishment and a mainstream media in both countries that whines and complains day in and day out about issues that are totally unimportant to most of us.

In Canada, not only the public funded CBC, but the private networks as well, are absolutely useless in terms of offering balanced coverage. I mean, flip your TV channel or Twitter thread to one of them and it will be anti-Trump 24/7 and not a negative word about our immature Pollyanna prime minister, Mr. Trudeau.

And, yes, the Canadian media and naive Canadians are responsible for the government we now have because during the summer and fall of the 2015 federal election campaign, they waxed lyrical about “Justin” while simultaneously trashing everything Harper.

All hogwash. Sunny ways indeed!

Think about it. How many Canadian readers now remember the near hysterics about the Mike Duffy trial and the so-called corruption in the PMO because a senior staffer had paid the public treasury back some $90,000? Paid back mind you.

Compare that to now. We have a federal Liberal government that is getting away with spending millions, if not billions, we don’t have. Yes, I know, the Harper government had a huge deficit for a while because of the 2008/09 recession. But, they had a plan to pay it down, which they did, handing the country over to the Liberals in October 2015 with a $5 billion surplus. 

Of course, there is the current hysteria and cynicism going on in the U.S. Look, I don’t particularly like the crudeness of some of what President Trump says, but the proof of his effectiveness should be in the results of what he does, not whether he kicks CNN’s drama queen Jim Acosta out of the White House.

As a Canadian, I am envious. If only our economy was booming the way the U.S. economy is booming. I mean, the U.S. currently has the lowest unemployment rate in decades. And, they have all the pipelines they need. Therefore, any lack of political correctness on Trump’s part is irrelevant to the everyday lives of Americans.

Which makes me miss a certain former Canadian PM by the name of Stephen Harper. If ever any leader was competent, it was Harper. True, he has a very different temperament than Trump but the same type of inner strength, day-to-day, to ignore negative press and Liberal whining.

Yes, I used to criticize Harper on this blog for not fighting back. Having worked for an MPP in the Mike Harris PC (Progressive Conservative) government, I knew responding to negative press issues quickly worked. But, in the end, the Ontario Liberals toppled the Ontario PCs too — something the Ford government needs to remember.

Which brings me to why, in our current political climate, spouting baloney really does seem to baffle brains. In other words, well-meaning people hear untruths and exaggerations so long, they begin to believe them. We got Trudeau because of all the “sunny ways” media baloney which was based on hollow promises, out right lies, and virtue posturing. And now the U.S. have a Democratic House for the same reasons.

So, what does all this mean to Canadian conservatives? In my opinion, what it means between now and the October 2019 federal election, is all we are going to hear and read about — 24/7– is pro Max Bernier media coverage (including upbeat photo ops) compared to the anti-Scheer narrative that “Scheer is weak.” Why? Because Liberal progressives clearly remember that the Reform/PC vote split guaranteed that federal Liberal governments would be elected.

From my point of view, then, the crux of the matter is that until Canadian conservatives shovel their way through the current baloney and realize that there is little chance a Bernier-run conservative party can overcome the current CPC (Conservative Party of Canada), there is little I feel like writing about.

C/P at Jack’s Newswatch.

Like Nigel Wright, ALL politicians & staffers do “issues management”

Click for project credits.
Click for project credits.

Such hypocrites, the lot of them, from the mainstream media and political pundits, to the opposition leaders themselves. There is near hysteria about the Duffy/Wright/Harper issue even after we know the “PM is good to go” did not mean the PM knew that Wright would be paying for Duffy’s expenses.

I mean, who among them has not “managed issues” to eliminate or reduce bad press? It used to be called “public relations.” Now, more often than not, it’s called “damage control,” “communications” or “issues management.” It’s all inter-connected.

For example:

(1) NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair and his staff have been managing the “satellite office issue.” Who, for example, hasn’t heard that the spending of the $2.7 million funds used were following the rules and that they can prove it.  Now read the final paragraphs of a Kady O’Malley CBC column:

If he [Mulcair] can also provide conclusive, compelling evidence to back up his party’s claim that House administrators were fully aware of the satellite office staffing expenses, it will likely shut down any attempts by rival parties to prolong the House-mandated study by calling additional witnesses. Alternately, if the New Democrats appear to be holding back key documents….there’s a good bet that Mulcair’s appearance will do little to quell the controversy.”

Now, for those who have been following the Wright testimony this week at the Duffy trial, doesn’t that sound familiar? Except the above was said in a Parliamentary Committee hearing, not a criminal court’s proceedings.

(2) Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau and his staff have been managing his response to the “not yet ready” issue presented in a Tory ad. Check out this Google search page on the topic that indicates that the Liberal Party has actually put out an ad saying Trudeau “is” ready. Plus he has spoken directly to the matter himself. As well, I have seen red T-shirts with that motto on the back.

My point is that issues management is what all politicians and political staff do. Sometimes strategic plans don’t work as hoped and staffers have to be flexible enough to respond to the punches. Regardless, there is only one man on trial right now and that is Senator Mike Duffy. He is on trial because he is alleged to have expensed his PEI property as his main residence so that he could claim he was travelling while in his Ottawa home. Why he is charged with bribery because Nigel Wright paid for his $90,000 worth of expenses I simply don’t understand.

As far as Wright is concerned, however, what comes to my mind is the old saying: “no good deed goes unpunished!”

Anyway, no matter how much progressives would like it to be true, Prime Minister Harper is not on trial. In other words, the PM has done nothing wrong. For those who claim no one was fired. Actually, someone WAS fired — Nigel Wright — over the fact the PM did not know that it was he and not the Senator himself, who paid Duffy’s expenses. Actually, that is the way it usually works. Wright was the Chief of Staff so he had to take the fall for the misunderstanding. And, yes, that is all it was — a misunderstanding.

Yet, listening to the CBC’s Power and Politics tonight I swear the host Rosemary Barton (who I like) and most of the pundits (other than Rick Anderson) thought the sky was falling and, as a listener, it seemed to me, were throwing out hysterical allegations and false narratives as they went along.

The crux of the matter is that what Wright and those who worked under him in the PMO were doing in the winter of 2013 was simply issues management. Nothing more. Nothing less — regardless of the terminology used by the Defence lawyer on Duffy’s case. Just as Mulcair and Trudeau’s staff and volunteers are doing now day in and day out during this election in their campaign.

Remember that every time you see or hear Mulcair and Trudeau ranting against the PM over the $90,000 bank draft that was used to repay taxpayers.

Remember that when mainstream media journalists refer to this matter as a huge Harper scandal. It is not.

But, most of all, remember what this election is really all about, by checking out my list of “100 reasons to vote Conservative” on October 19th, 2015.

C/P Jack’s Newswatch & thanks to NewsWatchCanada for the referral.

CBC biased headline “Canada loses 6600 jobs” an outright untruth!!

Credit @jimmydubyyc. Click for Twitter Site.
Credit @jimmydubyyc. Click image for his Twitter Site.

Check out the tweet above from @jimmydubyyc’s Twitter account three days ago on August 7th at 9:06 in the morning. My thanks to him for the screenshot. If ever you needed concrete proof that Canada’s national news service has an anti-Conservative bias, then the headline across that image says it all.

Canada Loses 6,600 jobs. Unemployment rate remains at 6.8%. ”

The problem is that the truth is the exact opposite. Canada gained 6,600 jobs in July, 2015.

Now, take a look at this Google search page confirming that job growth. At the bottom of the first Google page, there are even a couple of CBC News items that say “modest job growth in July.”

So, what happened? A simple error? An employee who was out of line? Or, was the corporation that taxpayers fund to the tune of $1 billion dollars a year deliberately trying to make the Conservative Government’s economic record look bad?  Whatever the reason, the onscreen message was a blatant error and nothing short of yellow journalism. And, those responsible should be fired!

I mean, you can bet the CBC would not make such an error if there was negative news about either the federal Liberals or the NDP. In fact, apart from Twitter, I have not heard anything about the anti-oil sands position held by most NDPers, such as Linda McQuaig’s view that the oil should remain in the ground — a quote said on the CBC’s supper hour politics show. In fact, apart from some conservative Twitter accounts, like MP Michelle Rempel’s Twitter account, the silence is deafening!

Lots of us said this was going to be a nasty election campaign but who would have guessed to what extent the CBC and other mainstream media would manipulate the news to the point of presenting untruths? The crux of the matter is that all of us who value democracy and the Conservative Party, need to refute the untruths and exaggerations every chance we get.

The media, not PM Harper, have effectively dropped election writ

Can you believe it? In the last day or so, most in the Canadian mainstream media are dizzy with trying to control the news.  Like the CBC’s Peter Mansbridge and his “At Issue” panel on last night’s National. They were talking as though the 2015 election had already started — which it has given all party leaders have been campaigning for months!

Their problem? The Conservative Party of Canada has raised more money and has more volunteer boots on the ground than the other two main opposition parties combined.

Now, let’s analyze that problem? Isn’t it a good thing that a political party is so popular that they do well raising money? Isn’t it a good thing that their supporters are willing to volunteer for Conservative candidates across the country? You’d think so, wouldn’t you? However, the opposite narrative is what the media is pushing.

For example, check out these headlines:

(1) Half of Canadian voters back NDP – Liberal coalition, poll shows. What poll? A Forum push poll? How valid is this poll? And, am I to assume that the other half of Canadians are backing the Conservative Party of Canada (CPC)?

(2) Economy shrank in May, fifth consecutive monthly decline, Statistics Canada shows. In other words, the Canadian Press writer is trying desperately to show that Canada is in a recession with the implications that the Conservatives have not done a good job managing the economy. Yet, right near the end of that article it states: “But some economists have said Canada hasn’t exhibited some of the classic hallmarks of a recession, citing the country’s job growth and stable employment rate.” Follow-up: Interestingly, mid morning, National Newswatch has changed the title of this article to: “A sour result as economy shrinks in May, fifth consecutive monthly decline.” A sour result? Bias in action.

(3) With NDP still in lead, why are the Tories still targeting Trudeau? Yes, of course, it’s Althia Raj of the Huffington Post, whining as to why the Conservatives are still running “attack ads” against Trudeau. Remember, earlier this week, she was complaining that the Tories were running an “attack ad” about the money the NDP spent on satellite offices. So, who should the Tory ads target if not the two opposition parties and/or their leaders?

(4) Breaking down the costs of an extended election campaign — as though only the Conservatives would benefit from a longer than usual campaign! Never mind that both Thomas Mulcair and Justin Trudeau have been in campaign mode for months. Plus, as I said at the start of this post, what is never mentioned is that by raising more money than the other parties combined might actually mean something positive!

What it all looks like to me is the Canadian media are undermining democracy and the potential news cycle when the PM walks out of the Governor General’s estate after the writ has been dropped — by effectively dropping the writ themselves!

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Endnote: Remember, there are at least 100 reasons to vote Conservative on October 19th, 2015.

NDP leader Tom Mulcair has the “audacity” & arrogance to play victim

Click for
Click for “PayItBackNDP.”

Regarding the NDP satellite offices scandal, why are so many in the Canadian mainstream media allowing NDP Leader Tom Mulcair to play the wronged victim? I mean, Mulcair actually suggests that the old time political parties should not have the audacity to hobble the NDP?

Can you imagine if PM Harper ever accused the Liberals and NDP of ganging up on the CPC (as they actually did with the 2008 coalition) and hobbling their electoral chances?

I mean, if Mulcair is talking like that now before the 2015 federal election, can you just imagine the arrogance if he and the NDP were ever elected the government, even with a minority? Anyone who would question or criticize the NDP would be marginalized.

Need proof of that attitude?

Well, check out what Mulcair’s demeanor and behaviour was like at the parliamentary hearing on the issue of the satellite offices. The arrogance and dismissiveness just rolls off him.

Then, read this recent piece by Huffington Post columnist Althia Raj. She claims that by complaining in a YouTube presentation (www.payitbackndp.ca) about the taxpayer money the NDP have spent on satellite offices, the Tories are attacking the NDP.

Attacking? Inaccurate? Talk about mincing words. The NDP skimmed money out of elected NDP MP constituency budgets to pay for the extra offices!  I mean, if the expenses were legitimate, how come there wasn’t an approved parliamentary budget specifically to pay for satellite offices?

Moreover, does Raj actually know the difference between parliamentary work and party work? Does she not realize that MPs are not allowed to have so much as a political party poster or party logo in a Constitutency office?

There is no blue, red, green or orange line here. Constituency offices are supposed to be 100% non-partisan because they are providing government services to all the people of the riding, regardless how they voted. Plus, those services — like passport and CPP disability applications — should only be provided via the staff of the elected Member of Parliament for the riding in question.

In fact, the only time satellite offices are allowed anywhere at any level of government in Canada, is when a riding is very large. Even in that case, the satellite offices are paid for out of the budget of the politician who was elected for that riding.

Perhaps because I was the Chief of Staff and EA for an Ontario PC MPP between 1995 and 1999, I  understand exactly what should be going on within individual riding constituency offices.

I can’t imagine, for example, the Ontario NDP being allowed to have a “satellite” office down the street from Liberal Premier Kathleen Wynne’s Constituency Office simply because they claim the NDP staff are only doing Ontario government related work — work that only Wynne’s staff should be doing. And, yet, that is exactly what we are talking about, albeit at the federal level.

The crux of the matter is that far too many in the Canadian media are not doing Canadians any favours by treating the NDP and its leader with kid gloves — as though the NDP are perfect and unanswerable to the Canadian people for the taxpayer money they have spent on staff in satellite offices.

Some Canadian media in full “Harper Derangement Frenzy”

Aryn Toombs/Calgary Herald CALGARY, AB -- July 4, 2015 -- Prime Minister Stephen
Aryn Toombs/Calgary Herald CALGARY, AB — July 4, 2015 — Prime Minister Stephen

The Financial Post’s Terence Corcoran is bang on today with his detailed article about how many in the mainstream media — such as editors and reporters at the Globe and Mail, the Toronto Star and the CBC — are in full HDF mode — as in Harper Derangement Frenzy. (H/T NewsWatchCanada)

Notice that HDF is a step up from HDS — Harper Derangement Syndrome. Corcoran describes the frenzy as “a media hell-bent on a pre-election campaign to bring down the Harper government regardless of any facts.”

Canada has never been in better shape yet these outlets are trying to label everything the Conservatives are doing as proof they have done a bad job, when in fact, it is the exact opposite as I wrote last week — Canada is once again the most admired country in the world for good leadership and good management.

But, back to Corcoran. Here are his first two paragraphs:

Maybe you missed the news last week, which is that Canada under Stephen Harper’s Conservative government has just regained its title as the most reputable nation in the world. According to the Reputation Institute’s annual report, Canada remains at the top of a 55-nation list for perceived trust, admiration and respect, based on a survey of 48,000 people around the world.

Easy to miss, that story, since few media picked it up. Instead, the Canadian media complex is in the grip of Harper Derangement Frenzy (HDF), which is an upgrade to hurricane status from Harper Derangement Syndrome, identified several years ago by Lorne Gunter as “an ideological hatred of Prime Minister Stephen Harper that is so acute its sufferers’ ability to reason logically is impaired.”

So, the crux of the matter is that Canadian voters need to completely ignore the anti-Conservative media — who should be reporting fairly and accurately on all the political parties — for the sake of Canadian democracy.

 

Latest CIBC Angus Reid poll: Is it 34% won’t take advantage of new TFSA limits or 42% who will?

Click for TFSA details.
Click for TFSA details.

TFSA 2Media bias is sometimes subtle in the liberal mainstream media and on Internet news sites. Other times, like today, it’s not subtle at all.

For example, there is a column posted on National Newswatch about a CIBC sponsored Angus Reid poll. It has the catchy headline that “A third of Canadians won’t take advantage of new TFSA limits.

Yet, when you click on the link, the inside title states that only “10 percent of those surveyed plan to max out TFSA annual limit.

Yet, in fact, neither result seems to be completely accurate.

Specificially, if you read the original source for this poll at PRNewswire, you will see something else again in a table under the heading “Awareness.” It indicates that 38% of those surveyed said, “I haven’t yet but intend to [contribute to my TFSA],” while another 4% say “they have already topped up their TFSA account.”

So, if you add those two numbers together you get 42% of those surveyed have or plan to take advantage of the new limit of $10,000 — not the “10%” in the heading.

Big difference!

Meaning, not only are the headlines misleading, so are the stated outcomes. In fact, the whole poll is questionable. For instance, in the PRNewswire column we read: “On April 30 and May 4, 2015, an online survey was conducted among 3,011 randomly selected Canadian adults who are Angus Reid Forum panelists.”  (My underlining.)

Sorry, but if you are a member of the Angus Reid online site, you have NOT been randomly selected per se because it is a self-select group to begin with. Meaning, the research was not done using a traditional random sample.

Regardless, the crux of the matter is that this CIBC Angus Reid poll is meant only to undermine the new Conservative Government initiative of raising the TFSA limit from $5,500 to $10,000 — by claiming that few Canadians intend to do so.

When,  in reality, based on Angus Reid’s own figures, up to 42% of those surveyed actually plan to “up” their contribution level, if they haven’t already.