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Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Bill C-10 gets support from conservative pro-family group


Canadian Family Action Coalition (CFAC) president Charles McVety appeared today before the Senate committee studying Bill C-10. CFAC supports the proposed legislation that would deny tax credits to Canadian film and video productions that are offensive and contain messages and themes that are contrary to government public policy.

Here’s an excerpt from a Canwest News Service report on the CFAC position on the proposed legislation:

"Canadians are fair-minded people that want federal funding to go to support arts and culture in this nation," said Charles McVety, president of the CFAC. "However, it's very clear that the overwhelming majority of Canadians do not want offensive films to be funded."

The group recently commissioned a poll by Compas Inc., that it says proves there is a consensus among Canadians that subsidies should not be provided to offensive films.

Bill C-10 does not, however, address the issue of federal subsidies for offensive films. Government subsidies for films come through Telefilm Canada and other programs. Bill C-10 deals only with the Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit – and a tax credit program is not the same as a government subsidy program, as I explain in my last post on this subject.

Furthermore, what CFAC seems to be advocating is a system where government subsidies remain in place but are allocated based on whether or not a film meets government public policy objectives. Would this pro-family advocacy group be taking this position if Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau or Heritage Minister Sheila Copps were still in power? Granting this kind of discretionary authority to the government is a risky proposition for conservatives and pro-family advocates.

Consider this: If Bill C-10 is passed, a film like Fitna, the Dutch film critical of Islam, would likely never be produced in Canada. No Liberal or Conservative government would risk being perceived as sanctioning a film like this.

As I conclude in my last post, the federal government should scrap its programs that subsidize films...all films, but they should leave the tax credit system alone.

Posted by Matthew Johnston on April 16, 2008 in Canadian Politics | Permalink


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Sorry but they should be asking for an end to all government assistance to the industry.

Posted by: Alain | 2008-04-16 5:10:04 PM

HARPER AND HIS FUNDAMENTALIST TALIBAN SUPPORTERS ARE TRYING TO TURN CANADA INTO A THEOCRACY. Anyone catch that anti-abortion bill through the back door they are trying to pull? LOL! Fundies are governing Canada.

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-16 7:28:22 PM

Alain, I agree with you- no help at all. Artistic endeavours including media should stand or fall on their own merits. If we miss something good- so be it.

Posted by: DML | 2008-04-16 7:55:40 PM

Comes down to a simple question really: Is art something that represents the country. If yes, then there should be support for it, if the answer is no, then do away with it.

Posted by: Snowrunner | 2008-04-16 8:07:47 PM

No, it is not a question of whether something represents the country or not. If you, Snowrunner, want to support it, please do, but it should not be an open invitation to the public trough. Anyway it has been a very long time since there has been anything of artistic value produced. The good and real can fly on its own value.

Posted by: Alain | 2008-04-16 9:48:22 PM

Posted by: Alain | 16-Apr-08 9:48:22 PM

Sure it is. That's the question: How do YOU define Canada. If you had to name three things that represent Canada, what would they be?

Art in the "good old days" has always been (to a large part) the domain of rich people who comissioned artists to create pieces to "upstage the Jonses". With the rise of the modern State this role was transferred to a large part TO the state.

That doesn't preculde any individual from contributing, but why should the Government not (blindly) suppor the art either?

But now we're getting philosophical, so let's just get back to my first question:

What three things do define Canada for you, and do you think the Government should invest money in these three things, if so, why, if not, why not?

Posted by: Snowrunner | 2008-04-16 10:17:34 PM

Bill C-10 is a horrible thing and I don't give a crap what anyone says about my opinion. If a Canadian filmmaker wants to make a movie about something that's "inappropriate"... so be it! Canada has always been known as a freedom of speech country, so why are we breaching the constitution and the rights of filmmakers, directors, film/TV producers of Canada? By the way, the "good old days" of Canadian film were documentaries only... A long time ago, that's all Canada made ever!! We should shun those who are for or who support bill C-10!! KILL BILL C-10!! KILL BILL C-10!! Bill C-10 should fall into the fiery clutches of hell, and it's supporters are foolish and are against freedom of speech and are for the evil that is censorship of Canadian films. The Senate shouldn't even think about passing this bill! LONG LIVE SARAH POLLEY! LONG LIVE CANADIAN MOVIES!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: The-Manque | 2008-04-16 10:32:19 PM

Freedom of speech? Where the hell have you been. The freedom of speech is under attack via the Human Rights Commission. Frankly I can do without the usual fudge packing, little boy raping movies that come out of Canada these days. Freedom of speech is not me subsidizing you to make your shit.

Posted by: Faramir | 2008-04-16 10:35:28 PM

these CONservatives are eager to buy bang bang toys for Hillier to play with claiming that it puts Canada on the map, as if we needed being put on the map, but when it comes to showing the flag in areas where it really matters, like culture, these neaderthals are missing in action. For every dollar invested in cultural products like movies, books, magazines, and art work, thousands of dollars are generated in direct and indirect economic activity. The fools claim to know about business but don't know the first thing about branding a country like Canada! These Alberta bean counters don't understand marketing 101. Our culture spending is what keeps us together as a nation, not bombs and long-haul transport planes for overseas nor scrap submarines those dumb Liberals bought, nor the silly warmongering from the CONservative whoremongers.

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-16 10:51:12 PM

You guys are all missing the BIGGEST point.....The government is NOT sensoring these movies or banning them from being made. It is simply removing tax payers funding to films that are of great controversy, mainly pornographic and whetehr it be a majority or not, clearly many canadians have a problem with, and dont want to pay for it. The government is not saying you cannot make them, or sensoring the films, just that they should do it on their own dollar. Since when did the goernment start paying for productions of films where the profits go into producers pockets anyway?

Posted by: Chris | 2008-04-17 12:00:20 AM

Posted by: Chris | 17-Apr-08 12:00:20 AM

First of all it's "Censorship" not "sensorship"

Secondly.Pornographic material IS controlled (and so are movies) for release in Canada. Movies are regularly edited for content.

As for Porn, that is already covered with the obscenity law, so sorry, but it's not like you can do whatever you want.

Finally, who is going to be the arbiter of "good taste" in Canada? You? Either you give a tax credit to all movie productions (is there any porn that actually HAS benefitted from it?) or you give none at all. This "Someone higher up will let you know" gives no clear guidlines for any film maker.

So, nice try, but sorry, you're arguments fall a bit flat.

Posted by: Snowrunner | 2008-04-17 1:01:48 AM

It's laughable that any Canadian would listen to what an American chowderhead like McVety; what are you CONs, sheep?

If you want to end subsidies, end ALL subsidies; for art, agro, oil, business, religion, everything.

Posted by: joe bleau | 2008-04-17 2:27:00 AM

Chris - YOU are missing BIGGEST point. This bill is not about "tax payer funding". It is a tax CREDIT. It gives a very small percentage of the costs of labour back to those who fund the film. It acts as an incentive for those funding and producing the films to employ Canadians. Furthermore, under Bill C-10 the film would not be deemed "offensive" until AFTER the producers had to secure funding. So it would have a chilling effect on the entire film industry because no investor would know for sure whether they would get their tax credit until after the film was made.

Posted by: Michelle | 2008-04-17 7:38:13 AM

Michelle, a tax credit is a subsidy because they are not paying the same rate of tax as other businesses and individuals. That means that taxpayers like me have to pay more.

And for this I get absolutely nothing. Why should taxpayers pay for some no name comedian or pervert to make a movie? How is this is our national interest when there are real needs that are going unmet? To deny someone health care because we want to produce a comedy show is EVIL.


If we promoted UNITY instead of multicultural divisiveness, we might actually have a single community and a Canadian culture.

It boggles my mind that governments spend money to divide us through these pointless multicultural grants and then people whine that we have no unique Canadian identity and want to spend more money repairing this damage. It is like running the furnace and air conditioner at the same time and whining that you are uncomfortable.


Posted by: epsilon | 2008-04-17 9:26:03 AM


Your reasoning above is overly simplistic. The government is not taking money away from hospitals and distributing it among filmmakers. The reason for the tax credit is not only because many see the Canadian Film Industry as a valuable part of our culture, but because it makes good economic sense. Foreign investments in films made in Canada contribute over a billion dollars a year to our economy, as well as over 16 thousand direct jobs and 26 thousand indirect jobs. The tax credit is an incentive for films to be made in Canada.

As for your vision of a bland, uniform Canadian culture, I don't share it, but since it has nothing to do with this discussion that's beside the point.

Posted by: Michelle | 2008-04-17 10:09:15 AM

Posted by: epsilon | 17-Apr-08 9:26:03 AM

So you are against all tax breaks? In this case, where your tirade against the tax breaks that are given to the Oil Industry in Alberta? I mean seriously, do you want someone to get to fill up his SUV while someone can't get health care because the Government had to give money to Big Oil?

Posted by: Snowrunner | 2008-04-17 10:27:12 AM


For once, we can see eye-to-eye on an issue.

Corporate welfare, whether it be to oil companies or film makers, is plain wrong.

Governments function best as rule-makers and rule enforcers, not as a redistribution of wealth in a futile attempt to equalize outcomes. This futility is a historically-proven fact.

In the course of running a business, there are legitimate expenses which can be used as offests against income.

If there is no market for art or films ... or for that matter, any other product, it should be allowed to die a natural death.

Posted by: set you free | 2008-04-17 11:00:18 AM

Snow and Set,

I am in agreement as well.

It has been a long time since the film industry could be considered a producer of art and culture.

It has become nothing but another entertainment industry where people try to make a living with a more interesting job than most.

The folks in the industry make films to further their careers and make money. There is big money to be made even in the cheesiest of productions if they are successful.

If they have something marketable they will find private investors. The government should not be in any industry subsidizing anything. Nor should they be monitoring and censoring anything that film makers want to produce.

The folks will decide what they want to pay to see and that's the best way to run any business. That includes the music industry as well if you can even call most of what is being flogged nowadays as music.

Posted by: John West | 2008-04-17 11:17:36 AM

“This futility is a historically-proven fact.”

Bullshit. No it is not.

In fact, societies that prioritize the re-distribution of wealth, generally speaking, enjoy a better quality of life than societies that don’t. For evidence, the Scandinavian countries score near the top of most indexes that attempt to seriously grapple with quality of life. Quickly, name a country which doesn’t re-distribute wealth in some form? Sierra Leone? The Congo? Countries known mainly for their dysfunction.

The real debate is over how much re-distribution in necessary and/or desirable, how much, at what levels, and through what processes.

Even Adam Smith recommended subsidizing and protecting activities which are considered in the national interest. This can include everything from Military goods to art. For example, successive Canadian governments have seen it in the national interest to subsidize the arts. This is because the Canadian electorate want Canadian stories, films and art out there, and they implicitly realize the domestic market is small – English Canada being roughly the same size as Australia, another country which provides plenty of non-market based incentives to its artists and filmmakers; and rather more successfully I would add.

Based on his past writings, Stephen Harper doesn’t like the institutional support Canada offers its artists and filmmakers. Nor does he like or appreciate much of which falls under the broad rubric of culture, especially Canadian culture. The exception might be hockey, though that only because it is politically expedient, a way for Stephen Harper to seem to connect with a middle class demographic he so obviously doesn’t belong to or identify with, being a professional, anti-tax lobbyist.

Are their any members of the present Conservative Party who have ever, in any way, displayed an appreciation of the cultural life of this country?

The Conservatives recognize the country generally supports Canadian culture and are only chipping away at the system rather than assaulting it frontally. Which is dishonest. Sort like laundering money in and out of riding offices. Dishonest.

Not wanting to look like the far right, know-nothing ideologues they are, they instead attack products which violate what they term ‘Canadian values’ – values which get articulated in the very culture Conservatives don’t like and seem, for some weird reason, to distrust. They are caught in a feedback loop.

Why would anyone trust a bunch of hicks who don’t like movies, for example, to decide what movies are representative of ‘Canadian culture’ and which aren’t. And how the Conservatives might have thought this made electoral sense is a thought almost as ridiculous as the active absence of thought on display in this thread.

Posted by: Feces Eating Buddha | 2008-04-17 11:52:16 AM

Hm, Bill C-10 does create a bit of a conflict for a libertarian-minded person.

First, giving tax credits to filmmakers reduces the government's revenue. Almost always, leaving more money in people's pockets is a good thing. Screw the government, and down with Bill C-10.

Second, there is the issue of rule-of-law. Letting some government agency decide who does and doesn't deserve the credit based on such subjective considerations opens the door to all kinds of abuse. We want the rules, whatever they are, to be as objective as possible. Two people people applying the same rule to a film should come to the same conclusion about that film. I'm not sure if Bill C-10 will have that result.

Third, there is the issue of whether people should be forced to support films they find offensive. Allowing filmmakers to write off part of the cost of their filming decreases total tax revenue, by whatever tiny amount. That means, perhaps, that other people might end up paying higher taxes to make up the difference. It's not altogether ridiculous to say that those people are "supporting" the films, by paying more in taxes than they otherwise would be required to pay.

These are the three considerations I see pulling in different directions regarding this bill. I'm not sure what the final verdict ought to be, but I'm glad Matthew keeps point out that this is a tax credit we're talking about, not a direct subsidy.


Posted by: Terrence Watson | 2008-04-17 12:35:39 PM

Chris, these liars and liberal shills don't care about censorship. They would shut down any conservative in a heart beat. Taking the government out of the subsidy business is NOT censorship. The Roger and Me crowd wouldn't understand economics from engineering. Governments do not create positive economic conditions. Freedom to innovate and produce DO. Geez. Pretty basic

Posted by: Faramir | 2008-04-17 1:47:12 PM

Snowrunner, you dipshit, how about do some research instead of swallowing Layton's balls to get misinformation on oil subsidies. Oil companies do not get subsidies. They get an accelerated capital cost allowance, which is nothing more than deferring taxes to the future.

Posted by: Faramir | 2008-04-17 1:49:40 PM

Feces eater, you are a liar of the worse sort. Adam Smith NEVER condoned subsidies. He was the consumate free trader and was against mercantalism and every form of interference in the market place. As far as the Euro pussy lands you are so fond of, they have a massive, and I mean massive social welfare liability hanging over their heads. They are effectively bankrupt. Europe is a has been.

Posted by: Faramir | 2008-04-17 1:52:26 PM

Interesting use of the Simpsons. Did anyone notice that the freedom loving government of Venezuela tried to ban said show:


Posted by: James Goneaux | 2008-04-17 2:56:56 PM

Faramir (I wonder what sort of scam or demeanings definitions of Muslims that name imlpied?):

You are not an economist. You do not realize that along with the negatives of the European economies, there are strengths that far surpass the models of the USA. The governments of the USA are the biggest in history of Earth. Canada is far more restrictive in business licensings than in German, UK or Spain.

Any debates with Faramir in them will be discussions of stupidities and confusions and makes this website look very bad, truly.

Posted by: Paolo Jiminez | 2008-04-17 2:57:18 PM

Snowrunner, you dipshit, how about do some research instead of swallowing Layton's balls to get misinformation on oil subsidies. Oil companies do not get subsidies. They get an accelerated capital cost allowance, which is nothing more than deferring taxes to the future.

Posted by: Faramir | 17-Apr-08 1:49:40 PM

Now now you little potty mouth. Try that again without insults and maybe I actually try to have a discussion with you, until then: I am sure you're mother weeps if she could read how you "talk" to people.

Posted by: Snowrunner | 2008-04-17 3:13:31 PM

Faramir is exactly correct with the accelerated CCA. The same amount of corporate tax is paid but instead of depreciating an asset over 5 or 10 years, it is depreciated in 3 years. This has the effect of reducing taxable income in the short term but INCREASING it in the long terms when the asset is fully depreciated.

CCA's stimulate investment and this results in an increase of high paying jobs. Someone making $100,000 per year will be $30,000 in taxes. look at construction labour costs and you will see a massive return in income taz levels back to governments.

But beyond corporate tax, oil companies also must pay royalties on their raw materials. I don't know what these are but they can be extremely high. Tell me what other industry has to pay the government a huge tax on its raw materials other than pizza shops in Naples and Palermo?

Not only that the output of oil companies is subject to fuel taxes that comprise 30 % of the value of their output. Name me an industry that has its finished products taxed at a higher rate?


Posted by: epsilon | 2008-04-17 4:10:27 PM

Oh, a Spaniard - the home of dhimmitude! LOL. Faramir is the name of the character from LOTR who battled fictictious characters. WTF are you talking about? Germany? What a laugh. Even German companies know they are better off getting Brazilian labour to do their work. Japan long long ago passed Germany in quality of design and production. Has been. Proportional to the size of population and GDP, European economies are the most massive. Get a clue.

Posted by: Faramir | 2008-04-17 4:15:52 PM

Epsilon, Faramir and the John West are obviously neither informed, not educated nor experienced in either economics or marketing. At best, they are cost accountant clerks. They know only about cutting costs and have a simplistic belief that Adam Smith was pro-big business and pro-businessperson. Nothing could be further from the truth! Smith wrote that one ought to have the greatest skepticism and suspicion of those with vested interests--he gave businesspeople as examples of people with vested interests.
Smith was not the fool John West assumes who believes Smith to have been. In sum, Adam Smith is not summarized in an equilibrium point of supply and demand curves. If that is all that Smith is about, then he would not be the interesting character he was and remains.

A company run by cost accountants is one where there are no ideas, no investment in growth, no strategic plan to grow and make money and develop markets and market share. No, a company run by cost accountants are a dying, hopeless company that will slowly be dismantled and eventually will close down or go bankrupt.

In comparison, a company run by marketing specialists will develop a growth plan, complete with strategic measures to gain market share and develop brand identity and market segments. This requires imagination and creativity. It requires the outlay of money and investment in the future. Such companies might struggle, but they are companies driven by hope and belief in the future and the skills and abilities of the managers and employees.

Harper claims to be an economist because he has a masters degree in economics. Harper was never able to get hired as an economist by anyone. As an economist, Harper is a failure. He is plain incompetent. Harper is a bean counter. His solution to all problems is always the same--cut taxes, cut costs. Whether times are good or bad, recessions or growth, inflation or deflation, Harper always believes the same policies are applicable--cut taxes, cut costs. Harper is a simpleton. He does not respond to market conditions and adjusts his policies. To Harper, market conditions mean nothing! To Adam Smith, Harper is an idiot. Those who follow Harper do not understand economics or marketing, and they can easily be ripped off by crooked accountants. Enron, Parmalat, Worldcom, Tyco, Hollinger International, Arthur Andersen, the spectacular failures brought to you by simpletons who believe in simplistic ideas. Harper and Flaherty have already destroyed the Canadian economy and squandered the surplus. The longer they are around, the greater the damage will be.

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-17 5:22:19 PM

Go fuck yourself asshole. You don't know shit.

Posted by: epsilon | 2008-04-17 5:48:58 PM

Epsilon, thank you for the reply. It conforms to the law of diminishing returns. I accept your grudging admission of your failure and inability to answer my accusations of incompetence, ignorance and absence of vision. And yes, LOL!

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-17 5:53:58 PM

"A company run by cost accountants is one where there are no ideas, no investment in growth, no strategic plan to grow and make money and develop markets and market share. No, a company run by cost accountants are a dying, hopeless company that will slowly be dismantled and eventually will close down or go bankrupt".

I've worked for two companies that were not run by cost accountants; Dome Petroleum and Renaissance Energy. I'm no economist, but they both went tits up with their innovative thinking.
Both were warned by the bean counters but refused to listen. Both ended up ruining more than a few hard working, loyal people.

Imaginative thinking should be tempered by proper accounting. It's been shown time and time again. Anyone who thinks otherwise has never run/owned a business.

Posted by: dp | 2008-04-17 5:58:58 PM

Dome Petroleum and Renaissance Energy. Hmm. Kind of like comparing the Kuwaiti Oil Company or Kuwaiti National Petroleum Company or the Arab American Company (petroleum) to companies like Sony or Microsoft or General Electric.

How much creativity does it take to run a resource company, especially one that is more oligopolistic than one that operates in a market that is more or less closer to being perfectly competitive? That is not to say that it is easy to run a resource company, but it is one area where cost control matters a lot--unit cost is key in a commodity market. If one has a monopoly or oligopoly, then put accountants in charge, perhaps. But even there, brand identity is critical to remain competitive. So, instead of putting a cost accountant in charge of the company, split a resource company into cost centres and profit centres and let cost accountants run the cost centres (typically the production end) and let marketers run the profit centres (typically the sales end) and reward each differently, based on performance. When cost and profit centres are merged, the temptation to confuse priorities and get deep in a hole is very great, as you have seen.

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-17 6:18:42 PM

Totally irrelevant tripe, idiot. You don't know jack shit jackass. This is about subsidizing stupid media productions at taxpayers expense. Not droning on about banal crap.

Roger you are a fucking asshole. Go fuck yourself. Now.


Posted by: epsilon | 2008-04-17 7:11:16 PM

Dear Epsilon,

Many thanks for your reply. I truly appreciate you taking the time to respond to my posts. However, I was hoping for substantive reply. I guess those who can make reply do and those who can't let invective fly. So it is with you.




To the readers of this post,

EPISON IS Exhibit 1 for the why Harper neocons are bad for Canada.

They are incapable of forming a cogent, rational response to criticism. Just look at Epsilon. I rest my case. A distinct lack of civility and profanities to boot=Epsilon. There is no excuse for this type of post. It is reflective of Harper and his tactics. Very distasteful indeed. No wonder why decent people are turning away from them!

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-17 7:31:32 PM

Can everyone please pray for Epsilon so that the anger in her heart can be healed and she can return to the path of righteousness? If you are an atheist, agnostic or believe in things to which prayer is not a part, then do in your own way that which achieves the same end. Pray that Epsilon and his master Harper are healed and see the error of their nasty angry snarling ways and return to the road travelled by people of goodwill. If we all focus on that, I have no doubt we can move them to repent and seek redemption by doing good deeds, like paying their taxes willingly without carping, by stopping their money laundering and in-out-prone acts upon Canadian taxpayers. Amen.

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-17 7:41:51 PM

"Nothing could be further from the truth! Smith wrote that one ought to have the greatest skepticism and suspicion of those with vested interests--"

like environmental pressure groups, government agencies, the UN, special and ethnic interest groups; all of which have a vested interest in frightening the rest of us so as to keep their funds flowing — an interest that they, too, often fail to declare.

Posted by: DJ | 2008-04-17 7:45:14 PM

"No wonder why decent people are turning away from them!"

No worse than being strangled by a Liberal prime minister.

Posted by: DJ | 2008-04-17 7:47:19 PM

How's your good bud, Kofi Annan?

"Senior U.N. officials said they hope that Volcker's fourth and most complete report will bring an end to a painful 18-month probe of the $64 billion program, which investigators concluded was so poorly managed that Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein raked in $1.7 billion in kickbacks from participating companies and $11 billion in oil-smuggling profits. Among the most volatile allegations probed by Volcker were suspicions that Kofi Annan had steered lucrative Iraqi oil contracts to a Swiss company, Cotecna, that had put his son on its payroll."

"one ought to have the greatest skepticism and suspicion of those with vested interests--"

Posted by: DJ | 2008-04-17 7:51:49 PM

DJ politely wrote >No worse than being strangled by a Liberal prime minister. <

There's the problem. When one promises to clean up after decades of rule by people who had become corrupted by power over a long time period and then one's own corruption after a mere two years matches that of the ones one replaced, you have a problem of credibility. Harper says he ought to get a pass because he is no worse than the Liberals at their worst! Sadly, he is right about being no better. Harper might be worse than the Libs at their worse. Either way, no commendation for Harper. And the horror stories about Harper are just beginning to seep out. There is more, I am afraid.

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-17 7:52:51 PM

Kofi Anand was unfit to be a leader of the UN. The same is true of the present office holder, as well as Anand's predecessor, Boutros Boutros Ghali.

The UN is a failed institution. Nothing new there. Which country was the first to pull out of the UN in protest and to wish to build a rival organization? Yes, President Achmet Sukarno was overthrown by the CIA for his efforts.

What does that have to do with Harper's lack of integrity and honesty? Are you suggesting that Harper can be unscrupulous because Kofi is unscrupulous? Is that how far Harper has sunk, even in your mind? Interesting.

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-17 7:58:13 PM

Great, let the people decide by means of an old Canadian tradition. The Liberals can force an election. Otherwise they are worthy of greater contempt than Harper. They see the evil but will not act against it, even though it is within their power to do so.

"one ought to have the greatest skepticism and suspicion of those with vested interests--"

Posted by: DJ | 2008-04-17 8:02:19 PM

"What does that have to do with Harper's lack of integrity and honesty?"

Nothing. It's all aout you telling only half the story.

"one ought to have the greatest skepticism and suspicion of those with vested interests--"

Posted by: DJ | 2008-04-17 8:05:42 PM

An election? Now hold on there! Harper, Reform, and generations of Preston Manning fans all said that fixed election dates were de rigeur. Harper followed dogma and legislated a fixed election date. If Harper and his supporters are people of honour and integrity, they would demand that the fixed election date be honoured, not try to undermine their own legislation! How cynical are Harper and his crowd?

Ethics always comes first, of course. However, there are other ways of approaching this issue. An election will cost taxpayers millions of dollars. An election was held a short 2 years ago and voters said, "We want you all to share power and learn to get along in a minority government." Since then, polls suggest Canadians still have that view. So why waste money and violate the fixed date election law? Harper is trying to force others to break his law! How cynical. Sad, but true. The hidden hand of Satan is everywhere--didn't Adam Smith say that? LOL!

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-17 8:08:53 PM

The problem with simpletons who read Adam Smith, they just don't get him! Smith of course meant narrow self-interested parties, like businesspeople, whom Smith specifically names! Smith of course would have and did recognize that the interests we all hold in common are not special interests! Why do I always have to explain Adam Smith to those who claim to champion his cause?

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-17 8:12:03 PM

"Perpetrators, collaborators, bystanders, victims: we can be clear about three of these categories. The bystander, however, is the fulcrum. If there are enough notable exceptions, then protest reaches a critical mass. We don’t usually think of history as being shaped by silence, but, as English philosopher Edmund Burke said, ‘The only thing necessary for the triumph [of evil] is for good men to do nothing.’"

Posted by: DJ | 2008-04-17 8:12:54 PM

"Smith of course would have and did recognize that the interests we all hold in common are not special interests!"

For the edification of the simpletons, Smith, like Mill, lived in a homogeneous society.

Posted by: DJ | 2008-04-17 8:16:35 PM

There is a tendency to place excessive confidence and reliance on the sayings of great men (women are seldom quoted by westerners). Edmund Burke failed to take into account the most famous case of a contradiction to his claim! What can be interpreted from silence? Guess who posed such a question in English history? It is one of the most famous questions ever in the history of England. And it contradicts Burke's claim to the need for good men (sic) to say anything, at times. Note that your quote of Burke is where he says "good men to DO nothing." Did Burke expect mere voice or did he demand action in addition to mouthing off? Compare Cromwell to Thomas More, for example.

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-17 8:20:04 PM

Welcome to ROGER'S blog LOL

Will someone on the bridge get rid of that little shit.

Posted by: John West | 2008-04-17 8:24:33 PM


Adam Smith lived in a homogenous society? Please note neocons, DJ wrote homogenous, not homosexual--there is a difference--you can keep your hair on.

Adam Smith lived in the aftermath of English conquest of Scotland and the acts of enclosure. Smith lived as part of a defeated and occupied nation. So, there was the Anglo Scot divisions. There was the linguistic divisions of English, Gaelic and a patois of Scots English. Religious divisions loomed large, between the Protestants and the Roman Catholics, and within the denominations of Protestantism itself!

Moreover, England was itself multicultural with conquered Welsh and Irish parts of the British identity, to which Scotland was added.

Hardly homogenous by any standard.

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-17 8:26:51 PM

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