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Wednesday, March 01, 2006

From humble beginnings...

[x-posted to stephentaylor.ca]

Ben Chin is known to most 416/905ers as a former television personality and news host for Citytv in Toronto.

Chin's now running for the Ontario Liberals in a by-election for the riding of Toronto-Danforth after the provincial seat was vacated by the recently elected federal NDP MP Marilyn Churley.

As the political game goes for some, it is often advantageous to stress humble beginnings that only help magnify one's accomplishments.

Chin reaches out to his constituents in this advertisement:

"I moved to East York as a 13 year old.  I left my parents behind in Korea, where they were facing political persecution.  I didn't know if I'd see them again." -- Ben Chin, provincial Liberal candidate Toronto-Danforth

However, in this interview we learn a little bit more about Chin's family background and we get a clearer picture about Ben Chin's escape from Korea:

Q: As the son of a South Korean diplomat, you travelled the world. Did you notice the different cars in each place you lived?

A: I have always loved cars. I had toy cars and pedal cars as a kid. I used to have a steering wheel with a suction cup. You'd slap it on the dash, sit by the driver and pretend to drive. Because of my dad's position we always had a chauffeur. The first job I wanted growing up was to be a chauffeur. It's freaky in retrospect. Everybody's father had a driver.

Q: Your Dad retired from government service when you were 16 ...

A: Yes. We moved to Canada. In Europe the diplomat's car was the Mercedes. In North America it was the Cadillac. The first car we bought when we moved to Canada was a Chevette and then an Oldsmobile Delta 88. After a life of limos all I saw on the road were cars like these. I was shocked. I didn't know that such things existed. I was seven years old when I realized my Dad could drive. I gained a whole new respect for him. I thought the car belonged to the guy in the uniform.

Ben Chin was born in Geneva Switzerland and his parents actually moved to Canada when he was 6 years old.  When Ben was 10, his father's diplomatic posting in Ottawa ended and instead of following his parents back to Korea (the country in which the faced "political persecution"), Ben decided to stay in Toronto (source)

From the hard-knock life of a jet-set diplomat's chauffeured son to the Liberal backbench...

(h/t: Blamb)

Posted by Stephen Taylor on March 1, 2006 | Permalink


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Just another Dalton McGuinty wanna' be Liberal. Of course he wants to hide his 'Starbucks' past and foist himself off as a frugal 'Tim Hortons' kind of guy.

Another arrogant Liberal elite trying to don the coat of the common man. Won't fit, no matter how hard you squeeze in the bloated arrogance.

Funny watching him try though. A real 'gotcha' moment, enjoy. I'm sure there will be many, many more as time goes on.

Posted by: Mark-Alan Whittle | 2006-03-01 12:37:31 PM

I'm shocked , shocked.

Lies in the Ontario Liberal Party.


Posted by: nomdenet | 2006-03-01 12:40:06 PM

This is kind of like watching those Vanilla Ice interviews all over again...oh bad 80s flashback...

Posted by: Daniel | 2006-03-01 12:45:34 PM

"a love for hating someone" that seems to be the point of ShotgunBlog no dif here . WS does a wonderful job highlighting the true content of the story --Just another lying Liberal who had a limo driver when he was growing up. Keep up the good reporting!

Posted by: Colin | 2006-03-01 12:48:17 PM

brilliant reporting

Posted by: DN | 2006-03-01 1:16:40 PM

Multi-culturalsim trumps lies ... he'll win.

Dats da Canadian values eh?

Muliti-culturalism = mediocre ism

Colin ... the Shotgun blog is a place that holds the contemptable in contempt. That's a good thing for Canadians and a bad thing for political sycophants like you.

If you object to the reporting here ,,, then go away, you will not be missed. There are places for people of your ilk. Unhappy places like rabble.ca.

Posted by: Duke | 2006-03-01 1:37:09 PM

That's right Colin... as soon as someone points a finger at a Liberal the standard reaction is "nothin' to see here, nope, nothin' at all... move along now, don't you have to report on something significant?"

Posted by: Heather Cook | 2006-03-01 2:04:53 PM

Multiculturalism has nothing to do with this story.

The only culture here is the culture of entitlement and Chin is quite comfortable in it.

Posted by: Stephen Taylor | 2006-03-01 2:31:05 PM


In Canada, multiculturalism has something to do with everything that happens politically.

Haven't you noticed the hoards of each ethnic candidates 'people' unanimously supporting their man or woman no matter what?

Whatever gets them some sway (money) for 'their' community ... political office is the way to do it. Free money ... ya boy!

In order to keep up the pretence of Canada's Great Mosaic, it's imperative to have as many colored faces as possible in Parliament. Otherwise the guilt trip is stifling.

The Liberal party of Canada has made an art out of using the multicultural ticket to win votes.

Look at our immigration policies. Bring in all the left wing loser from all around the world and tell them that nanny Liberano will pay them off.

Don't tell me that this isn't just more of the same old trick.

Posted by: Duke | 2006-03-01 3:23:17 PM


there is nothing here in what I wrote that suggests that Ben Chin practises a different culture than your own.

The article does say that he lived in Korea and we can all discern that "Chin" is likely an asian surname.

Yet there isn't a single reference to culture in this article.

I assume that you're confusing "culture" with "race".

It seems that you have a problem with the idea of racial diversity (again, this concept is different from "cultural diversity") as you decry the 'colored faces' in Parliament.

While I can accept the debate among those who try and determine the appropriate balance between "cultural integration" (welcome to Canada, here's your hockey stick, and FYI: you will now say "eh") and "multiculturalism" (welcome to Canada to you and all of your wives), I find your intolerance towards "color" and ethnicity (ie. race) shameful.

You have a legitimate argument if you say that a country's citizens should have some mutual values and/or practices, but you should lose everyone's respect when you decry a multi-racial society.

And now... sadly... this has now become about Ben Chin "the asian guy" instead of Ben Chin "the lying Liberal".

Posted by: Stephen Taylor | 2006-03-01 4:04:10 PM

Stephen- shouldn't you be giving a hat tip to Brett Lamb - this almost exact post was up at Blamblog a day or two ago. Or is it he who owes you - or just coincidence ?

Posted by: Nbob | 2006-03-01 4:06:02 PM

Nbob, I have the attribution on my post at stephentaylor.ca

I must have lost it during my copy/paste from my site to here.

I'll fix that now. Thanks.

Posted by: Stephen Taylor | 2006-03-01 4:12:59 PM

Stephen Taylor, you can deny all you want, but a huge element of the conservative movement thinks like good ol' boy Duke. Enjoy.

Oh, and Tim Hortons coffee sucks. So does Starbucks, but their clientel is of a better ilk.

Posted by: Soviet Canuckastani | 2006-03-01 5:36:45 PM

I believe you meant "colour" not "color".

Posted by: Howard Roark | 2006-03-01 5:36:51 PM

This made me laugh - is that a bad thing? Why on earth would this Chin fellow make up a story like that? "Rags to Riches" is not a liberano virtue. Unless it is done on the taxpayers dollar.

Posted by: jema54j | 2006-03-01 8:10:15 PM


Perhaps you are right. I may be confusing race with ethnicity and culture. It's hard to seperate them in this country. It's quite a mess actually.

Mulitculturalism doesn't serve Canada well nor anyplace else for that matter. There is always unrest wherever it exists. Multi-racial is fine ... if assimilated into the general culture and norms of our society. Remember the old "united we stand"? We are anything but a united country in many ways.

If I come across as being chauvenistic on this topic, it's because I am very angry at what Liberal immigration has done to this society.

I am a brown face AND multi cultural myself for your information ... what is it you call guys like me .. Heinz 57? ... no offence taken it's just a metaphor.

I associate with many races IE I don't hate people who aren't white anglos. I hate people who pervert our system to serve a specific group in society rather than the greater population. That is what I have observed some members of govenment do. I have watched how they get elected in their ridings. I don't watch hockey. I pay attention.

My contempt also extends to people like Jean Chretien (and don't get me going on Trudeau) paying off his friends and family and who knows who else. I would have to catagorize him as a French Quebec criminal (alleged).

He is from another cultural group than most other Canadians so will you tag me with a bigot or racist label on me for describing him as such?

Please tell me what adjectives are not allowed in describing a person, group or situation?

Please tell me who I can resent or be angry with and who not and why not? An unfair request because you believe in free speech do you not?

If there is some animosity between ... how can I say this mmm the standard B-flat Canadian and the ethnic enclaves, it's because they choose to live separately from the rest and work against, not only us, but each other. Where do you think most of the crime is in the cities? It's like having a bunch of demented little countries living inside a greater country.

That cannot work and it pisses me off that nothing is being done to bring us together. Rather is suits Left to maintain the status quo. Just like every other issue in Canada. Nothing must change ever ... Trudeapia forever.

It's not Ben Chin I am against, it's multiculturalism. Call me whatever you want. I loved my Country as it was before it became the Tower of Babble. Can't build much when you can't talk to each other.

I am sorry if I disgraced this blog in anyway. That was not my intent.

Posted by: Duke | 2006-03-01 8:49:54 PM

Limousine Liberals.

Posted by: infidel | 2006-03-01 9:32:01 PM

Here's a joke:

What's the difference between Canada and the Soviet Union?

Soviet Union:

A young lady wants to buy a car. The dealer tells her that she will get it in about two years.

She asks "What day?"

The doctor says: "Monday, May 21st, 2008, 4PM."

She says: "That's going to be a problem"

Doc: "Why?"

OLady: "That's when the plumber's coming."


An old lady wants a hip replacement. The doctor tells her that she can get it in two years.

She asks "what day?"

The doctor says: "Monday, May 21st, 2008, 4PM"

She says: "That's going to be a problem"

Doc: "Why?"

OLady: "That's when I have my cataract surgery."

Posted by: Ace | 2006-03-01 9:43:25 PM

>From the hard-knock life of a jet-set diplomat's chauffeured son to the Liberal backbench..

And then there's Ignatieff

Posted by: Nbob | 2006-03-01 9:58:16 PM


thanks for clarifying your position on the issue. I felt that I had to call you on some troubling language regarding race. If, instead, it is multiculturalism that you're against, I can certainly respect your position (I'm not sure yet where I stand, but see below...)

Many people call multiculturalism a failure on many levels: lack of unity in language, our uncommon values, differing cultural views on family and a woman's place in society. etc.

However, multiculturalism has given us great food, great music and in the best cases... interesting philosophies.

In fact, as more and more people move to Canada from a variety of different countries the debate will only grow more significant.

Certainly, Europe is realizing a crisis of its own when it comes to immigration and cultural integration vs. multiculturalism.

I think that the majority of people that debate multiculturalism fall into the same trap and believe that "culture" is synonymous with "race".

When this happens, we cannot have an honest debate about where our culture / multi-cultures are headed.

I don't have any problems with a multi-"coloured" Parliament, so long as they serve Her Majesty QEII (and cheer for Team Canada in the Olympics)... you know... at least some common values.

But also consider that one of our most common values is that we live in a very individualistic society... to each their own and all that...

What are our common values? Who gets to set them? Is culture dynamic? What about our country? Is our culture an average of each constituent's values? Should it be? What if I just want my own culture that isn't defined/promoted by the state?

These are all fair questions.

Posted by: Stephen Taylor | 2006-03-01 10:02:19 PM

Duke and Heather, Thanks for quickly supporting my commentary I was feeling a little threatened before as if I was not fitting in. Thanks, you are so very supportive of different thoughts I like your comments like " go away we won't miss you and some big words that I think mean I am nice" . I beleive that all stories like this one that are based on a few specific quotes are baseless as the full transcipt of the inerview should be read as well his tone and body language be judged. I'm sure experts like you know that alot can get lost in print by filtering tone and body language. The interview done with Ben could be quoted any way a writer likes. "Liberal gets suprise when father kows how to drive at 7" this would be funny either way you take it.

Posted by: Colin | 2006-03-01 10:32:27 PM

Colin, I provided a link to the full text of the interview. I also posted a link to the full ad in which Ben Chin claims to come from political persecution.

These links were in the original post.

Posted by: Stephen Taylor | 2006-03-02 12:29:25 AM

In the real world of Toronto politics, either Chin or an NDP socialist will win - this is primarily because of the political slant of the
Toronto media. Watched Puffy Duffy last night wearing a gift tie from Saint John MP Paul Zed
which Puffy proudly called his "Liberal renewal
tie" - bet the tie was made in Pakistan or China.

Posted by: Jack Macleod | 2006-03-02 8:20:26 AM

SteveTaylor: "However, multiculturalism has given us great food, great music and in the best cases... interesting philosophies."

- Well if I want "great food, music and etc" I could just go down to the corner Greek/Mongolian/country/ethnic named restaurant for that and save billions of dollars.

Problem with "interesting philosophies" is we never know who is right. Oh, wait, there is no right, no absolutes. Uh huh. University stuff. Seen enough kids come out of those puppy mill courses more confused and bitter than when they went in.

"I think that the majority of people that debate multiculturalism fall into the same trap and believe that "culture" is synonymous with "race".

While this may be splitting hairs, but really don't most races dictate their culture?

Let's see if I have this right: Multiculturalism means "multi-cultured" or "of different backgrounds" right?

It also means by inference - "equal representation", which in reference was to stop bigotry right?

So what constitutes a culture if not racial?

Let's see, such as Islamic is that a culture or a religion only? And if memory serves me right, they are touchy about cartoons, that our culture thrives on. Learning to laugh at yourself is a sign of maturity no?

So, if this same culture thinks women are chattel, or possessions, then how do we incorporate that into our Western "women's rights" culture?

Or if Asian culture demands homogeneous thinking, or mass mentality, how does it work with our independant western thinking? Or if plagiarism is considered a compliment, how does that work with today's copyright laws?

See, when I first started seeing the "multicultural" mentality seep into government back in the 70's I knew it would lead to reverse discrimination under the guise of "equality".

So the sooner we realize and ADMIT that multiculturalism (and bilingualism) was a failure, the faster we can as a country get back on our feet away from 'dysfunctionalist idealism'.

Posted by: tomax | 2006-03-02 12:58:57 PM

There is a failure here to separate immigration from multiculturalism which is government-funded support and encouragement for people to continue the culture of their countries of origin. We don't need that. Immigration alone ensures that we see a cultural mosaic in this country. Pumping milions of dollars into "community organizations" is outragous. Think about this. It may be a part of my culture to play cricket with my friends or to hold a folk dancing festival in my back yard. Why should taxpayers pay me to do this?

Posted by: Howard Roark | 2006-03-02 2:25:50 PM

Stephen - I agree you did post them thanks - I didn't see them at first glance. Thanks -I am only saying that there has to a limit on the number of levels of quoting a story can be given, Like say iF I quot you and someone quotes me quoting you - we will surely have a differnt story with a different spin.

Posted by: Colin | 2006-03-02 7:11:16 PM

Duke, Stephen,

Multi-culturalism brings good and bad to Canada, just like anything other culture or anything else in life. Speaking for myself in the Vietnamese community here in Calgary, we try to teach people to embrace Canada. however, we are sad that alot of news about Vietnamese-Canadian is mostly about drug-dealing, gambling and money laundering. It's embarassing but what can we do but keep preaching. Even as a visible-minority, I also have mixed-feelings about multiculturalism and where it's going.

We in the ethnic communities are trying to educate our communities to not block vote simply because a candidate is chinese or vietnamese or korean or east-indian. It defeats the purpose of democracy. You speak of 'block-voting'. It doesnt really exist in a general election because the ethnic population is too small compared with the entire voting public. The main problem is in the cadidate nomination process
where nominations are too easy. In Calgary, if you're the candidate for the PC provincially or Conservatives federally, you'll win guaranteed, Yes the nominations are so small that if I rounded about 500-1000 friends, i'd win the nomination. This is what these small communities do. I remember in 2000 where PC MLA Wayne Cao won his re-nomination 200-150. 200? If people participated more in the nomination process, ethnic communities could never 'rig' the vote.

As for the Ben Chin issue, it sounds fishy to me however I will wait to pass final judgement. I have written some point on my blog which I hope will be answered in the days/weeks to come.

Posted by: Peter | 2006-03-03 2:09:34 PM

As if voting in Canada at all levels isn't mostly block voting... by whites first and males second. Come on. What are you going to do now, whine about "the most qualified candidates" and how you're not racist because "some of (your) closest friends are Asian" and you "love Chinese food." I'd say that's a good answer if this was 1960. Oh, and yes, Duke and Peter, I'm including the self-hating minorities here.

A highlight from Toxax: "Or if Asian culture demands homogeneous thinking, or mass mentality..." Amazing. So this is what the Alberta education system produces. I guess they teach you that "multiculturalism" began when white people started feeling resentful of dark-skinned people in the 1980s. Ha ha. Morons, multiculturalism isn't about skin color. Did anybody here attend the 3rd grade class on the war between the French and the English?

You want sloppy thinking backed up only with stereotypes (absorbed from Hollywood movies and FoxNews) in the service of bigoted sentiments, come to Western Standard! Yee-haw!

Posted by: A True Canadian | 2006-03-08 10:51:57 AM

I remember years ago being excited that I saw the Ben Chin on the street with CityTV. I said hello Ben and he gave me a dirty look that I have never forgotten. He is still the same egotistical moron now that he was back then, but well maybe he has learned how to lie.

Posted by: Paul | 2006-03-15 10:13:30 AM

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