Friday, July 14, 2006

All animals are equal ...

What a curious development:

In his latest column, Stephen Harper offers an update from Ottawa. "It's been quite a ride," the PM reports. Since the election, the new Conservative government has made progress "on all of our five priorities -- from cleaning up the federal government, to cutting taxes, cracking down on crime, supporting families, and strengthening our country at home and around the world."

Read that list again.

Notice anything?

Maybe not if you don't live in Ottawa. But in the capital, everybody who read that list spotted it immediately. Harper is playing Hide-the-Priority. And he's being pretty clumsy about it.
The fifth item in his list was never among the five priorities the Conservatives campaigned on. The fifth Conservative campaign priority was: "work with the provinces to establish a Patient Wait Times Guarantee." Harper has replaced it with this business about "strengthening our country."

And it's not a typo. He lists his priorities, newly amended, at the top of his column. Then he lists them again further down. There's the federal accountability act ("cleaning up the federal government"); the GST cut; the tough-on-crime stuff; the $1,200 in annual payments to parents of young children. And then once again, where health care used to be, Harper announces he's "begun work on uniting the country and making sure Canada's voice is heard internationally." ...

The Report Magazine column isn't an anomaly. It's part of a trend. You can still find the health care commitment if you go looking for it on government websites. But it has vanished from the government's "push" product -- the messages it sends out through speeches, broadcasts and written opinion articles. During a cabinet meeting in Quebec City at the end of June, the PM read a statement congratulating himself for "significant progress in addressing the priorities of Canadians." He listed four of the five priorities, but not wait times.

Ah, but I'm sure that we're just mistaken. Nothing to see here ... move along:

It was about this time that the pigs suddenly moved into the farmhouse and took up their residence there. Again the animals seemed to remember that a resolution against this had been passed in the early days, and again Squealer was able to convince them that this was not the case. It was absolutely necessary, he said, that the pigs, who were the brains of the farm, should have a quiet place to work in. It was also more suited to the dignity of the Leader (for of late he had taken to speaking of Napoleon under the title of "Leader") to live in a house than in a mere sty. Nevertheless, some of the animals were disturbed when they heard that the pigs not only took their meals in the kitchen and used the drawing-room as a recreation room, but also slept in the beds. Boxer passed it off as usual with "Napoleon is always right!", but Clover, who thought she remembered a definite ruling against beds, went to the end of the barn and tried to puzzle out the Seven Commandments which were inscribed there. Finding herself unable to read more than individual letters, she fetched Muriel.

"Muriel," she said, "read me the Fourth Commandment. Does it not say something about never sleeping in a bed?"

With some difficulty Muriel spelt it out.

"It says, 'No animal shall sleep in a bed with sheets,"' she announced finally.

Curiously enough, Clover had not remembered that the Fourth Commandment mentioned sheets; but as it was there on the wall, it must have done so. And Squealer, who happened to be passing at this moment, attended by two or three dogs, was able to put the whole matter in its proper perspective.

"You have heard then, comrades," he said, "that we pigs now sleep in the beds of the farmhouse? And why not? You did not suppose, surely, that there was ever a ruling against beds? A bed merely means a place to sleep in. A pile of straw in a stall is a bed, properly regarded. The rule was against sheets, which are a human invention. We have removed the sheets from the farmhouse beds, and sleep between blankets. And very comfortable beds they are too! But not more comfortable than we need, I can tell you, comrades, with all the brainwork we have to do nowadays. You would not rob us of our repose, would you, comrades? You would not have us too tired to carry out our duties? Surely none of you wishes to see Jones back?"

The animals reassured him on this point immediately, and no more was said about the pigs sleeping in the farmhouse beds. And when, some days afterwards, it was announced that from now on the pigs would get up an hour later in the mornings than the other animals, no complaint was made about that either.

AFTERSNARK: And the revelation continues to spread.


Anonymous said...

A pig in a poke. At least it didn't morph into " defeating world- wide Islamofascism as directed by Washington".

Somena Woman said...

Q, you obviously aren't wearing your neo-con secret decoder ring. That's exactly what it's morphed into, but in Canada-speak.

BWT CC, thanks for that linking love!

Unknown said...

Fuck, another non-conspiracy.

"It's been quite a ride," the PM reports. Since the election, the new Conservative government has made progress "on all of our five priorities -- from cleaning up the federal government, to cutting taxes, cracking down on crime, supporting families, and strengthening our country at home and around the world."

Standing up for Familes ( e.g. supporting families):

• Choice in child care. We will give all parents $100 per month per child under age 6 to spend on child care needs as they choose – whether that means formal day care, a babysitter, neighbourhood child care, or helping one parent stay at home.

• Patients: We will cut medical wait times by establishing a Wait Times Guarantee by the end of 2006 – setting wait time reduction targets to ensure that all Canadians are treated within medically acceptable time limits.

• Our seniors: We will protect their hard-won gains by increasing the pension income-tax deduction to $2500, and ensuring better service for seniors.
Harper wants to strengthen our country at home and around the world. What a terrible thing, we should just tear everything down and live in caves in a progressive manner.

The more I read lefty blogs, the more I realize that Ann Coulter is all of you rolled into one, only the mirror image. The reason you hate Ann so much is you are all just like her.

All nuts, all of you.

Anonymous said...

Ah.... so CC's reaction to Wayne's brief moment of sanity a few posts ago was indeed justified.

Learn something new everyday. I need more cynic in my bleeding heart.

Mike said...


I'll try to say this s-l-o-w-l-y so you understand it, m'kay?

"strengthening our country at home and around the world."

This WAS NOT one of the 5 priorties from the Election. As CC points out "work with the provinces to establish a Patient Wait Times Guarantee." was.

Now it has mysteriously disappeared.

The 5 Prioirities were repeated, ad naseaum during and after the election evertime a CPC MP spoke to the press, and the priorities laid out there aren't them.

All the sophistry in the world does not change that. "Standing up for Families" does not include those that you list, otherwise THAT'S WHAT THE PRIORITIES IN THE ELECTION WOULD HAVE READ LIKE.

But they didn't. Harper is changing them because he knows that he can't get the Wait Time Guarrantee and some of his other measures are unpopular. So he's changing the list to make himself look better and hoping no one will notice.

Just how stupid are you anyway? or do you love the CPC so much that you can't imagine criticising hem, even when they defy logic?

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
CC said...

Go away, Wayne. Seriously. You've violated the cardinal rule on this blog, and that's to be thoroughly unfunny and unenlightening, not to mention pathetically repetitive.

You have a blog so you can post idiotic, asinine stuff there.

P.S. No matter how often you write about Ann Coulter, she's not going to link to you or show up at your door to give you a blowjob.

Deal with it.

CC said...

By the way, this applies to the rest of you -- no more comments about Wayne. We've already established that he's a moron. There's no point belabouring the obvious unless you have something to add to the discussion.

In short, let sleeping idiots lie.

Mike said...

Who are you talking about?


Somena Woman said...


the thing about the secret decoder ring...uh... I hate to break it to ya -- but that was what we in the reality based community like to call humour. A joke if you will.

Something to brighten one's day, or liven up a discussion that's turned very dreary.

Anonymous said...

I'm just curious. Does the CPC and its 'new' Canadian Government expect most people to be away from news sources or direct interest because it's summer?

Is it less dangerous to them to casually start leaking at the seams because the shelf life of the exposure doesn't have the staying power to chug until Parliament sits again?

Even MWW's investigative digging on the CPC convention irregularities/illegalities seems becalmed in larger waters.

Meanwhile, Harper is giving 'exclusive' interviews to local media outlets in Calgary during the Stampede, where no one seems to be doing anything but nodding at him.

Anonymous said...

I try to remember that Steve and his friends are charter members of the make-your-own reality club. No girly men allowed.
"We make reality while you watch."
In shock and awe.

Somena Woman said...

"Even MWW's investigative digging on the CPC convention irregularities/illegalities seems becalmed in larger waters."

We are doing this nice and slow Niles. And we decided to do so because it's summer. There's more to come on this - especially now that there appears to be a game of brinksmanship between the CEO of Elections Canada and Harper's office over handing over those Convention Books.. (you know.. the one's they said that EC officials had already checked but.. uh, actually hadn't)...

There are reporters who are digging into this - but it's a complicated story, and it involves some explanation, background research, and a little more gasoline on the fire before it ignites big-time.

It's what - Mid July now? So, what we need to do is punch out a story on this every couple of weeks until say late August. Create a long paper-trail for journalists who are currently just smiling and nodding to sink their teeth into, when the thing gets bigger.

That's the game plan.