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Wednesday, February 15, 2006

FORKs vs. Colleen

Our new issue (dated February 27) with the Danish cartoons has generated a lot of buzz about editorial independence and freedom of the press. And now our last issue (dated February 13) has, too.

We're not fending off radical imams this time, though; we're fending off the tired, overripe government of Alberta. In a political news column, Ric Dolphin described the frustration felt by various friends of Ralph Klein (they call themselves FORKs) who think Klein should retire already, and let the party select a new leader. Many FORKs have shifted their allegiances to other various pretenders to the throne, and they're impatient, especially since Klein has extended and re-extended his retirement. Call it Martin vs. Chretien, writ small. (UPDATE: Here is the story posted on our site.)

Dolphin talked with two FORKs about their frustration, neither of whom allowed their names to be used. Dolphin described one of them as a long-timer fishing buddy of the premier, and the other as a long-time campaign manager. They blamed Colleen Klein's enjoyment of the perks of office as a key reason for Klein's delay -- something that Klein himself conceded in a year-end interview with Canadian Press.

But one of the FORKs -- the fishing buddy -- went further. He added a racial overtone, saying that without the limos and the security guards, Colleen Klein would be "just another Indian", a rude comment that, as we put it, was an "unkind reference" to Colleen's Aboriginal roots.

Rude? Insulting? Racist? Yes, yes and yes. Which is why it's news -- especially coming from a family friend of the Kleins.

I personally received enraged phone calls from the premier's office, and from a cabinet minister demanding to know the identities of the FORKs in question. Another two cabinet ministers cancelled their subscriptions in a showy flourish -- to make sure the boss saw their act of shooting the messenger loyalty. I said the same thing to all of them: We're just reporting on your Chretien/Martin-style civil war, and we'll keep reporting it.

Things lay fallow for a few weeks -- until the Premier's office saw the OJ-style coverage that our cartoons story received. They tried to cash in, by arranging for one of Colleen's aboriginal charities to have a press conference protesting... against us! Not against the foul-mouthed FORK, but against the Western Standard for having published it.

It's the same logic that Rich Jones, who runs the premier's office in Calgary used on the phone with me: He actually said that we shouldn't have published those comments, even if someone from inside the premier's office itself had made them!

Sorry, Rich. We're not the kind of magazine to take our orders from foreign imams, and we're certainly not the type to take them from Ralph's blustery spin doctors. We sympathize with Colleen's hurt feelings but we didn't say the words -- we just reported them, and we'll continue to report on the growing divide between those who think Ralph is past his best-before date, and those sycophants who will do anything to keep him -- and the missus -- in power.

UPDATE: Metis Voices weighs in, criticizing those who would have preferred that we helped the FORKs keep their racism a secret:

If it wasn’t for the article, they wouldn’t have known about the racist comment. The magazine isn’t racist, its the dickwad that Ric Dolphin was talking to. In the context of this article, how can you say that even Ric Dolphin is racist if he is quoting someone else? I’m not defending the statement, but get real. It is a replay of the Muslim cartoon story all over again.

Except in this scenario, everyone is repeating the “just another indian” statement. If the Western Standard is to be blamed, then we can equally blame The Edmonton Sun, CTV and the CBC and Air Canada shouldn’t carry anything by them either.

These news services are hypocritical. They won’t publish Muslim cartoons because they don’t want to offend, but they’ll jump up and replay “just another Indian”.

Posted by Ezra Levant on February 15, 2006 | Permalink


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The Western Standard published an article containing a racist comment towards Ralph Kleins wife Colleen. I havent seen that article but did receive an email via the The Institute for the Advancement of Aboriginal Women: In the February 13... [Read More]

Tracked on 2006-02-15 9:07:41 PM


Not even George Orwell's imagination could have imagined this: "TSFTOOLIMCATPOCH".

Let us try:"TSFTOOBIMCATPOCH". Which letter stands for blogs/bloggers? Right: the letter for today is "B" .

Seriously, this stuff is worrisome! The real worry is that governments are using this "cartoon" stuff as a cover for increased state control(s).

"The Service for the Oversight of Legislation in Mass Communications and the Protection of Cultural Heritage"


Russia Clamps Down On Religious Insults
The Guardian (UK) ^ | 2-15-2006 | Katy Duke

Posted on 02/15/2006 4:00:10 PM PST by blam

Russia clamps down on religious insults

Katy Duke
Wednesday February 15, 2006

After the recent Muslim caricature controversy, Russian media organisations have been ordered not to publish anything that could be construed as offensive to any religion or risk losing their licences.

Russia's media and culture watchdog, The Federal Service for the Oversight of Legislation in Mass Communications and the Protection of Cultural Heritage, has pledged to take a tough line against any organisation accused of "insulting religious feelings".

A spokesman said: "Measures envisaged in Russian legislation, including the cancellation of registration, will be taken if any Russian media issue materials insulting religious feelings."

The statement follows recent demonstrations around the world by Muslims protesting against satirical cartoons of the prophet Mohammed that first appeared in a Danish newspaper.

Today's announcement was followed by the launch of an investigation by the Russian Prosecutor General's office into a Volgograd newspaper that recently published a religious cartoon. >>>

Posted by: maz2 | 2006-02-15 6:51:33 PM

I say, look what I just found at WikiPedia:

* "If liberty means anything at all it means the right to tell people what they do not want to hear." - George Orwell

* "The principle of free thought is not free thought for those who agree with us but freedom for the thought we hate." US Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes in United States v. Schwimmer (1929).

* "Goebbels was in favor of free speech for views he liked. So was Stalin. If you're in favor of free speech, then you're in favor of freedom of speech precisely for views you despise. Otherwise, you're not in favor of free speech." Noam Chomsky, Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media (1992).

* "...if any opinion is compelled to silence, that opinion may, for aught we can certainly know, be true. To deny this is to assume our own infallibility." John Stuart Mill, On Liberty (1859).

* "The price of freedom of religion, or of speech, or of the press, is that we must put up with a good deal of rubbish." Robert H. Jackson

In my opinion, Ezra is standing on the shoulders of giants, and the appeasers are trying to knee-cap him.

Posted by: Vitruvius | 2006-02-15 7:00:27 PM

It's too bad the media can't get this story right. I was listening to CHQR all day and the reports would leave you to beleive that one of you writers spoke those words. Nothing like a good slandering.

Posted by: matt | 2006-02-15 7:07:43 PM

Letter to The Honourable Gordon O'Connor:


I write to you as a fellow citizen of Western democracy, not as a Canadian. I recognize that my opinion regarding the conduct of Canadian politics is open to outright rejection, but I think a dose of "We're all Danes now" would be useful in North American politics generally. My own country, the United States, has by no means lived up to this standard.

In defence of my effrontery, I offer the fact that I lived in Canada for 23 years and was able to observe the conduct of politics, and the changes in society, from the beginning of Pierre Trudeau's government until 1994. You will understand why I say I have heartfelt hope for the change Prime Minister Harper's government may represent. I wish you every success.

In that spirit, I must say that your recent comment regarding publication of the "infamous" Danish cartoons by The Western Standard was well off the mark...

More here:

Posted by: hershblogger | 2006-02-15 7:14:35 PM


You can also add this gem by Thomas Jefferson; "In matters of style, swim with the currents. But in matters of principle be as firm as a rock"

Posted by: WinnipegLibertarian | 2006-02-15 7:21:07 PM

Are some people actually suggesting that calling someone of Indian descent, who happens to vacate an extraordinary position, "just another Indian" is an insult?

The reason I'm asking is because speaking as just another human, if I were just another Indian, I'd be offended if someone considered that an insult.

Posted by: Vitruvius | 2006-02-15 7:24:03 PM

Ezra Levant you are the head of Canada's own JIHAD against gay rights and multiculturalism. The truth is you have MORE in common with the Islamofascists than you'll EVER ADMIT.

You're homophobic site breeds homophobia and many posts have been RASCIST (regular targets include urban blacks, franophones and of course NATIVES).

The experience of the Jewish people proves that their is a CORELATION between hateful speech and acts OF VIOLENCE. You may not say the words explictly but neither do many holocaust deniers yet their campaigns of HATE breed violence against Jews.

Ezra Levant, Canada's own anti-gay, anti-black, anti-multicultural, anti-franophone, anti-aboriginal JIHADIST.

Posted by: Christianity killed way more | 2006-02-15 7:24:44 PM

CKWM: Go back on your meds...you are hallucinating.

Posted by: MarkAlta | 2006-02-15 7:26:25 PM





For like too many bad politicians they allow us to be heard only at election times.

So King Ralph to me who looks today in the Edmonton Journal photo looked to me like a real sad alcoholic would not like me to also say now that Make yourself at Home Ralph, But don't forget your a still a guest as premier, one whose time to go is also now quite apparent as well.

(Eph 5:18 KJV) And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;

You Klein had said your wife Coleen was a good one, but I had personally had still failed to understand why she firstly did not send you to the hospital for treatment, when you were visibly an alcoholic drinking 3 bottles of wine a day. I really rightfully doubt you have given up drinking alcohol as well as you have claimed too.

Posted by: Paul | 2006-02-15 7:26:59 PM

Actually how does one respond to the above retardation???

Seriously.....how bad of an education system we must have too produce posts like the one above me!!

Oy....what a fruitcake!!

Posted by: Albertanator | 2006-02-15 7:28:13 PM

I was of course referring to 'christianity killed way more' etc etc....


Posted by: Albertanator | 2006-02-15 7:28:58 PM

"Moderation in temper is always a virtue; moderation in principle is always a vice." --Thomas Paine

"Liberty means responsibility. That is why most men dread it."
-- George Bernard Shaw

"Most bad government has grown out of too much government."
--Thomas Jefferson

Posted by: Vitruvius | 2006-02-15 7:33:07 PM

I just looked at the National on CBC and you certainly would believe that the WS is the one to blame here. Except I have the WS here and can see what was written. But if I had only the National to inform me, I would now believe that Colleen Klein has been victimized, another aboriginal group has been victimized and the Western standard is basically trash.

Isnt Canada just f**king wonderful??

Posted by: MikeP | 2006-02-15 7:33:52 PM

How does one respond to the murderous Muslims?

(Mat 7:3 KJV) And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
4 Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.

(Mat 5:9 KJV) Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.

Posted by: paul | 2006-02-15 7:36:20 PM

There is more reaction from Muslims worldwide, yes, including Canada than any straight after September 11th. Why is this?

This reaction is terrifying to say the least and should be an eyeopener to us all.

Posted by: Nicky | 2006-02-15 7:46:08 PM

>I just looked at the National on CBC and you certainly would believe that the WS is the one to blame here. Except I have the WS here and can see what was written. But if I had only the National to inform me, I would now believe that Colleen Klein has been victimized, another aboriginal group has been victimized and the Western standard is basically trash. "

The CBC plays dirty, it is get even time.. the CBC and some others have been upset that Ezra said they were cowards, false reporters who have double publishing, reporting standards.. one for Christians and one for Muslims. This is true and Undeniable.. I had made the same complaint in wrting to them even last week.

We today have a god example of another CBC hypocrisy in their reporting of a visiting Montreal Muslim imam, who himself had confronted a non Canadian Spanish speaking person who is not a Canadian, this Muslim imam who as a vigilante member of 3 pursuit in the Montreal Subway next pursued this other non Canadian person and in the resulting scuffle the Muslim got cut up by a knife.. now this imam claims that Muslims are targeted in Montreal, Canada.. but why did he rather not contact the MUC police and let the police do his work when the Muslim Imam next himself now had tried to physically stop the other person. The police are here to do that Job and not rather the imams are here to take the law into their own hand.. Here we have a god example of non Canadian causing problems in Canada and giving all Canadians a bad name for their own bad acts too. This iman was already scheduled for deportation as well as the person who had pulle dout a knife. Now 3 Muslims confronting one person does not make all canadians targeting Muslims for their religion,
the CBC has not posted these above truths even though other Canadian news media have.. the CBC has presented a slanted Muslim account.. and they do not like like the bad Muslims to be told the truth they too are liars, bad people at the CBC so they object and try to discredit the accusers, distort the reality.. but the truth is still now known by many too.

CBC plays dirty too.. unbelievable

Posted by: Paul | 2006-02-15 7:51:39 PM


What you fail to mention (even though everyone in Calgary seems to know)that the real sycophants are mowing one another over to be the next King Maker. Mr. Levant, why did you not share with your readers that the campaign manager you quoted is now one of the campaign managers for the "leading contender" for Ralph's job? Gasp! Didn't that fit into your agenda?

You clearly had a racist AND a political agenda. The timing of the article is not lost on anyone with half a brain.

You also failed to mention that Ric Dolphin had a complaint against him upheld by the Alberta Press Council for inciting racial hatred and relying too heavily on ANONYMOUS QUOTES.

Balanced reporting? Wake up people. You are sooo being duped by this political puppet. The worst part is that he probably doesn't even understand how they used him.

P.S. You call everyone else cowards yet you have no problem publishing the words of cowards. You are the worst kind of hypocrite.

Posted by: Bite Me | 2006-02-15 7:53:22 PM

Hi Ezra, I'll be sending in my money for a second subscription. Please have it sent to the Premier's Office.

40 Below Tory

Posted by: Gussie | 2006-02-15 7:53:55 PM

>There is more reaction from Muslims worldwide, yes, including Canada than any straight after September 11th. Why is this? This reaction is terrifying to say the least and should be an eyeopener to us all.

There are at least 4 instigators of this escalating Muslim reactions to their undeniable negative acts where Muslims themselves are bing negatively exposed, they are reaping negatives for what they sowed and they really do not like it.

1: The bad news media itself that wants to get Muslim readers support like the CBC etc.,

2 The many Europeans who have rejected Muslims and their bad acts are kicking them out of the country

3: the upset Muslims in Denmark who are embarrassed at being forced out of Denmark now too are responding in anger

4: Iran and Other countries are deliberately escalating this issue for their own personal agendas

5: Many persons the rest of the non Muslim world is upset at the bad Muslims too.

and yes you can now clearly see the personal Muslim shock to all of this in their respond, correspondences too when they are not getting the acceptance of many others, something they live for too.

(Gal 6:7 KJV) Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.

Posted by: paul | 2006-02-15 8:04:26 PM

I believe in free speech too!

It is not free speech in my opinion if the Western Standard reports hearsay, and hearsay is just what the abhorent comments were in regards to Colleen Klein.

It is hearsay simply by the fact that the member of FORK, (fishing buddy or campaign manager) refuses to permit his name published, then anything he says has to be suspect.

Must be nice to be anonymous and not have to stand up and defend your comments.

A serious editorial error to publish this trash... in my opinion

Posted by: Jim | 2006-02-15 8:13:33 PM

Hearsay is not free speech? I can't believe I heard you say that.

Hearsay is not permitted in court. It is abundant in the press, in all publications. Always has been.

Or are we just lumping everything we don't like into an omnibus bill to redefine free speech in our favour, Jim?

Posted by: Vitruvius | 2006-02-15 8:24:33 PM

Jim, I would say half the news you read or hear will have these words in them: Sources say, according to sources, unnamed sources etc. Every newspaper, radio, tv, all use unnamed sources. So my question is, why pick on the Western Standard for doing what every other news organization does??

Posted by: MikeP | 2006-02-15 8:30:54 PM

Hearsay is not permitted in court. It is abundant in the press, in all publications. Always has been.


It costs too much money to actually do original research, story.

My friend who was a city of Calgary lawyers did not believe me when i had told him that too.
He had a friend called Fred Stewart who was an Alberta MLA so as he had saw firsthand I next wrote a letter that clealry had lied about Fred Stewart and the Calgary newspaper next published them as facts shortly next, and my friend was shocked. I was not.

Posted by: JEANE | 2006-02-15 8:33:00 PM

I guess when I'm no longer The Supreme and Great Exhausted Rooster, Lord and Ruler Over Everything That I See, that I'll just be another fat white guy. Ooops!! The Political Correctness Police will be after me. How dare I say that, even about me.

Lighten up. Look around, it's beautiful out there!

Posted by: pat | 2006-02-15 8:35:01 PM

Jim: Quoting someone's opinion is not hearsay...and Ric was quoting the FORK's opinion of Colleen. Provided that the FORK was willing to give the quote on the condition of anonymity, there's nothing wrong with Ric quoting him.

As Ezra said, it was a rude, "unkind" thing to say about Colleen.

To Ezra and the WS crew: Keep up the good work. You've made me glad that I renewed my subscription last month.

Posted by: Shabbadoo | 2006-02-15 8:36:51 PM

Right, that settles it. I'm going to get a subscription to the WS on my next paycheck.

Posted by: Tozetre | 2006-02-15 8:40:54 PM

Fishing buddy Ralph? Hell with friends like that I'd rather be hunting with Cheny.

As for blaming the WS, why shoot the messenger?

Next time out kick the prick out of the boat.

Posted by: Douglas | 2006-02-15 8:46:03 PM

This is addressed to Jim, the guy who is all mixed up about what hearsay is.

"Hearsay" means evidence given by a witness who heard the evidence from someone else, and who does not have direct knowledge of the truth of the evidence. The rule in court generally is that a witness can offer evidence only where he or she has direct knowledge of it. (There are exceptions, when hearsay evidence will be accepted in court.)

To quote from "Duhaime's Online Law Dictionary": "You are able to tell a court what you heard, to repeat the rumor, and testify that, in fact, the story you heard was told to you, but under the hearsay rule, your testimony would not be evidence of the actual facts of the story but only that you heard those words spoken."

In reporting that someone said Premier Klein's wife would be "just another Indian" when the Premier retires, the Western Standard was reporting a fact of which it had direct knowledge. (Unless it concocted the scenario of someone making the statement, which I have not seen suggested.) It was reporting that it "heard those words spoken".

If the Western Standard were testifying in court, and offered the third party's statement for its truth - that is, that when the Premier retires, his wife will, in fact, be "just another Indian", then you could validly raise a hearsay objection. But (1) the Western Standard was not testifying in court, and (2) it was not opining whether the Premier's wife will or will not be "just another Indian".

Posted by: Blog Akimbo | 2006-02-15 8:52:25 PM

Being a mother of 8 children, most of whom are now adults, my children were taught to choose their words wisely and to not repeat rude, hurtful comments regardless of whose mouth the comments came out of. Shame on the Western Standard for not having the fortitude and wisdom when it came to repeating what someone else said. Last time I instructed my children I called that GOSSIP. Take away all the trimmings from each and every one of us and all we have left is just another..............german, italian, ukranian, englishman, canadian, etc....even my 10 year old has better manners and has figured this out. Perhaps the individual who is responsible for this cheap shot should go back to manner school for a refresher course in human dignity and kindness. You have just given me a reason to NOT purchase your magazine.

Regarding Colleen Klein........if your magazine accomplished for others one tenth of what she has given of herself, her time and her resources you might actually do some good instead of spreading your venomous attitude. She has been helping others long before any limos or security guards were ever in the picture. I know. I have known Colleen for a long time. Of course Colleen and Ralph have made no comment they are above you in intelligence and decency.

Regarding Ralph Klein..............so far he is the only politician in Canada that has yet to lose an election. Where is the Western Standard going to be in the history books...........at this rate..........nowhere. Obviously Ralph has a lot of support otherwise he would not be where he is today.

Posted by: redneckfarmgirl | 2006-02-15 9:08:56 PM

Newspapers, magazines, us pamphleteers, &c, are not that bad, and they're not that good. All have agendas because they're all made of humans. You are or should be free to associate with them (or any other legal assembly) or not, as you choose.

Most people should be able to figure that out by the time they reach adulthood, because by then they should have seen enough stories in the media that they knew were less than complete, based on their own personal experience. Apparently some aren't there yet.

Nevertheless, it remains the case that the concept of a free press is among the top few guarantees in all the declarations of rights and freedoms in the civilized world. That's because even when many or most are wrong on both sides, society must provide an alternative path for the truth to run up the middle.

History has found this to be valuable, even though it means all of us get to be occasionally offended. It's not efficient, like totalitarian states, but it's effective (as shown by the flourishing of the arts and sciences in free states).

Ezra understands the history of civilization, and stands on the side of civilization.

Posted by: Vitruvius | 2006-02-15 9:12:26 PM

Ezra, you're on the news every day now. I still miss seeing you on Face Off on CBC. "Get a haircut, get a bath, get a job! Why should Joe Lunch Bucket have to pay for you?" Priceless.

Posted by: Howard Roark | 2006-02-15 9:15:02 PM

Ralph Klein hates to hear the truth but the people of Alberta ,I believe are getting tired of this gang of pigs at the trough,pilaging the people telling us what's good.

Hat's off to Ezra some one has to print the truth that's what's wrong with Canada most of the papers,magazines media outlets period are federally subsidized,former Liberal bed buddies,that's all Canadians have heard for 12 years,people need to open there eyes instead of just gobbling up all this eastern Liberal shit like it's the gospel

Posted by: Matt | 2006-02-15 9:23:50 PM

Interesting, a right wing, anti-gay magazine and Reform/Conservative Party/Stephen Harper supporter publishing cartoons offensive to Muslims, but then we have Stephen pandering to Muslim groups for votes using same-sex marriage as a wedge issue. Maybe now Muslims know where Stephen Harper really stand when it comes to respect for their religion. Do Muslims still believe same sex marriage will usurp their religion? Sounds like Harper supporters are doing that for him.

Posted by: Random | 2006-02-15 9:30:40 PM

>Ralph Klein hates to hear the truth but the people of Alberta, I believe are getting tired of this gang of pigs at the trough, pilaging the people telling us what's good.

except the drunken Pigs who like the other drunken pigs

Posted by: paul | 2006-02-15 9:41:08 PM

Great quotes Vitrivius. Why isn't the media trying to find out who actually made the "just another Indian" comment, rather than blaming the WS for Dolphin's anonymous source?

It's especially ironic due to some of the pieces the WS has ran on Aboriginal rights issues (or lack thereof) in the past. Has the CBC ever protrayed the systematic racism and sexism of this country's "Indian" bureaucracy in an in-depth and honest manner?

Maybe Air Canada should focus more attention on overall customer service, rather than on limiting their reading options.

Posted by: Angela | 2006-02-15 10:10:48 PM

'We sympathize with Colleen's hurt feelings but we didn't say the words -- we just reported them'

Thats a good one to keep in mind. "I'm sorry to the family of so and so, but it wasn't my idea -- I just pulled the trigger.

If you really think about it, none of Osma's goons should be jailed. Kenneth Deane should be set free as it seems Harris was the one who ordered the OPP to remove the Native Indians in Ipperwash. I can see it now, "I was following orders when I pulled the trigger". The Judge will have no other course of action but to set him free...

Keep up the good work... lets see what other, don't shoot the messenger you can come up with. If I think of one, I'll post it.

Posted by: hamada | 2006-02-15 10:19:29 PM

yeah everybody hates ralph . thats why thousands of people are moving to alberta . ralph screwed up the alberta economy and our unemployment is soaring at 3% . and the prick actually gave us , even people from other provinces who've only been living here since sept . 2005 a share of the oil revenues. i wonder if ralph can remember who he went fishing with , probly not i imagine he was passed out in the boat the whole time damn him to heck .

Posted by: john | 2006-02-15 10:19:45 PM

Seems that your magazine is in a serious pickle?? The national press is making it sound like all your staff are total racists. I had to read for my self the facts, as you probably know, shock factor news sells, otherwise most canadians would of not even of heard of your group. I believe most canadians are open to freedom of the press, but I think now you have the attention of not so passive groups. I hope that our canadian military personal are not going to be targeted, or your group to say the least, as an acknowledgement that the message was recieved by some groups overseas.
Now you are on the world stage...
Kenn Roberts

Posted by: Kenn Roberts | 2006-02-15 10:21:56 PM


if you had read the actual article, you would see that it does credit Colleen for working hard for causes that are dear to her heart, such as the Kids' Kottage shelter and fighting against the growth of the crystal meth problem.

The gist of the article was about why Ralph is staying on as premier, and what factors could influence his decision to stay on for 2 more years or retire this year. In the past, Ralph has speculated that it was time to call it quits, only to change his mind later. This led to Ric Dolphin (the author of the article) talking to FORKs, resulting in one "fishing buddy" of Ralph's making a racist comment.

Posted by: Shabbadoo | 2006-02-15 10:42:41 PM

Natives were offended yet they did not burn embassies or kill anyone. Perhaps the Islamists should take notes and learn from them.

Posted by: HY | 2006-02-15 10:46:29 PM

According to some capitulators here, it would be much easier to ignore the comment and protect the real bigots and racists. I am from Newfoundland and Labrador so when I retire and walk away from my profession will I be "just another Newfie?" How many of you have used that word? Is that a racist or bigot comment? Can I sue the next person who says that to me? How is it chique for blacks to call one another by the 'N' word but not others? If someone is more comfortable around their own race or people than others is that person a racist or bigot because he prefers one over the other? Because I am into women sexually and not men does that make me bigoted?

I always thought it was easy to pick out the racists and bigots, they are hateful people. It seems the line is being blurred. Most want to belong to a certain group over others, are they racists or bigots? I guess it depends on what set of eyes you are looking through. But hey, what do I know, I'm just another white, inbred, cousin lovin Newfie. I's da bye!

Posted by: Lemmytowner | 2006-02-15 10:51:44 PM

The Mohammad cartoons had a point, in terms of responding to the real threat of violence against artists in the West. When the media refuses to publish them, the fanatics prevail.

The Klein story is another matter entirely. There are many ways to express dissatisfaction with Klein without resorting to the publication of a racial slur. The comment added nothing to the story. It was a gratuitous and low insult and showed horrible judgment by the reporter and editors involved.

I have subscribed to the WS in the past, but I won't do so again if this kind of doggerel appears on its pages.

Posted by: chip | 2006-02-15 11:12:19 PM

Canada is a relatively free and fair country. Grade A, I'd say.

So let's compare it to a box-girder bridge. A yeoman structure.

At a minimum, Mr. Levant is the guy running around with the hammer tapping on the girders and studying the acoustics to provide us with advance notice when they are rusting out.

The article is a fair reporting, complete with disclaimers and counter-arguments, of some girder-testing the Western Standard has been doing lately, in line with commonly accepted freedom of the press jurisprudence.

Thus, as is to be expected, all the rivets living off the rusty girders come out of the ironwork in an attempt to distort the acoustics in order to deny the girder-tester his results.

If we don't look out for people who look out for problems with our social infrastructure, if we let the girders rust in the name of not tapping on them with hammers: eventually the entire bridge will collapse.

Posted by: Vitruvius | 2006-02-15 11:27:45 PM

I think you've got it backwards. I've said my piece on the WS decision to publish a cartoon (bad idea) so I won't revisit it here. But if this is true - and without having actually seen the story -- this sounds like a genuine story about the ugliness that's emerging in battle from control of the one-party in Canada's only one-party state.
Sorry that Colleen Klein had to learn the sorry truth about her husband's friends and colleagues through the press, but that's public life for you. if those are the attitudes that prevail in Klein's inner circle, then exposing the dirtbags for what they are is a public service. to focus solely on the slur and to ignore who said it is to miss the point.

Posted by: truewest | 2006-02-15 11:38:40 PM

Yeah, I agree with what Chip said.

Posted by: Ace | 2006-02-16 12:00:34 AM

I also remember seeing the quote (without the perks Coleen Klien would be "just another indian".) in the last WS issue. What surprised me is the immediate attribution to racism.

In the absence of context, the first thing that pops into my mind is the expression, "too many chiefs, not enough indians".

Unless you have clear context to show that this was a racial reference, you have overreacted on this one.

Posted by: pete e | 2006-02-16 1:32:52 AM

Hmmm. Interesting spin that the MSM gave this.

What came across was how Western Standard was being racist for reporting the comment.
Coming so close on the heels of national coverage over the WS decision to reprint the Moslem photos, one has to wonder if such a smear was mere coincidence?

I think not.

Posted by: Darryl | 2006-02-16 7:32:42 AM

Behind every great man there is a great woman. Ralph Klein's "friends" are jealous because he will listen to their advice, and then take the advice of his wife, Colleen. There are many famous men in politics and in business who are guided all the way through by their wives. Without his Metis wife, Ralph would be just another pudgy little pale face.

Posted by: Bob & Ulli | 2006-02-16 7:36:14 AM

In my opinion, that's stooping pretty low when you have to attack the family of a Governement official just because you don't happen agree with his way of running the governement. It's like trying to add apples and oranges. Please people, don't mix things up!

As for showing the Mohamed cartoons, again, I agree with Freedom of the Press, but there is also a question of respect and good old "common sense" that is rarely found nowadays!! Oh and to reply to Chip's comment, the fanatics ALWAYS prevail no matter what you do! They shouldn't even be part of the equation, they are irrational human beings no matter what! So why on earth put oil on the fire??

Posted by: Chris | 2006-02-16 7:43:29 AM

I think it was Lester Pearson's wife that said:

“Behind every great man is a SURPRISED woman”

Posted by: nomdenet | 2006-02-16 7:48:17 AM

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