Thursday, 19 October 2017

Municipal Elections 2017: Calgary goes down in Flames

After the results of the 2017 Municipal elections became official, I placed a comment on Facebook stating that I was in shock. I also promised that I would explain my state of mind; and the following will surprise my followers. .
In what has been termed ‘the nastiest’ Municipal election in Calgary, the partisan leftist media and many liberal academics have tried to portray the re-lection of Naheed Nenshi as a victory for the City. They may be right for at least some 50% of the electorate, but they must also be aware that the World’s Best mayor saw a real dip in his popularity, and although he won by a 7% margin over his opponent, the result could be said that he won by the skin of his teeth. Yes some polls were correct and some were not. But in today’s world I put little credence in polls. I had my own list of preferred candidates and I called for the election of all 4 new candidates and the re-election of right leaning Councillors, with the exception of Colley –Urqhart. I was wrong on all the re-election of leftist Councillors.
The media’s post mortem is devoid of reality checks and persists to report on the outcome based on a progressive agenda. They have clearly ignored the angst of the electorate, the inability for many voters to actually vote because of bungling by the City’s electoral office. Given that four new right of centre Councillors were elected and that five incumbents got less than 50%, if this election was about change, the results demonstrate that it was partly so.
This election could have been an even more of a watershed if the media had covered the campaign accurately. All the talk about nastiness was misconstrued. There is no doubt that many social media comments came from all sides. But to believe that it all came from the right is totally biased. Has anybody considered that some of the comments made about leftist candidates could have originated from their own side to sidetrack the issues? I remember clearly the ‘brick’; in Nenshi’s campaign office in 2010.
It was so disingenuous when former Councillor Pincott claimed that the campaign was marred by Republican style tactics, forgetting that in reality it was mostly the Democrat style of campaigning that was prevalent when Nenshi used the race card, and furthermore most of the complaints came from leftist candidates. It was racism, a bogus lawsuit, or misogyny by female candidates supported by the left. While there were very few complaints from the right, I am mostly impressed by newly elected Joyti Gondek’s  interview by the Calgary Herald when the subject of gender politics  was brought up, Gondek bristled; “It’s funny, because I don’t think anyone that’s interviewing one of the new male (councillors) today is saying, ‘tell me about how you feel about being a man on council?’ ” says Gondek. “My gender didn’t weigh into my decision to run.” Similarly there was no outcry of racism from George Chahal.
It was also claimed that there were no issues debated, which was absolutely not true. Taxes were at the centre of the debates, financial misinformation about the Green Line, Midfield Park, and of course the Flames arena issue. Many people complain that Nenshi is arrogant and always seems to be the smartest man in the room. Well he may be arrogant, but on the campaign trail he was the smartest candidate. He turned all the negatives into a debate about inconsequential issues: like racism, diversity and inclusions. What Calgarians forgot was that when Nenshi was elected twice before there was no racism issue. The left’s contention of inclusiveness and diversity is always to divert and obfuscate the real issues. What is forgotten is that there was clear involvement by third parties in this election. Many incumbents, including the Mayor were openly supported by the Unions, and there was a clear interference by the NDP Transport Minister. The union supported incumbents won, but other candidates did not, so in that sense it was a victory for democracy
This brings me to why I was shocked.  To my readers’ surprise it is not the results that shocked me. It is the lack of understanding of why we had such a result. Let me explain. For years I have advocated for party politics in Municipal elections, as is common in many other jurisdictions. Believe it or not there was a leftist cabal in the last Council, and obviously they had the support of the unions. My shock is that conservatives still do not understand why we still have many Liberals on Council.  Even Rick Donkers the communication Director for Bill Smith’s campaign said that he did not believe in party politics at City Hall ; what a foolish thing to say. The real problem is that the left is always better organized and do not make any excuse for supporting certain candidates. By contrast, for some reason, conservatives hide their support being closed doors as if they were afraid of showing their ideology. In my book: Conservatives: Dead or Alive? I opined about the division among conservatives. I was shocked that there was no open display of support from Federal and Provincial elected members of conservative parties. Michelle Rempel was the only one I saw that openly supported Sean Chu. I am shocked that we could not elect a conservative Mayor when we had so many financial issues. I was shocked because the Flames got in the way with their extravagant request for taxpayers money. I was shocked that Bill Smith gave the appearance that he was supporting the Flames. I was shocked that Bill Smith, a very nice man, did not take the incumbent Mayor to task on the racism issue. I was shocked that a former athlete did not know that offense is the best form of defense. I am shocked that Calgarians still listen to the media which spent more time talking about Trump’s issues in the States than actually analysing the issues that are important to Calgarians. I was shocked that the academics did not challenge me when I exposed Druh Farrell’s lawsuit or my analysis of the Councillors’ pension fund and how taxes and fees are costing Calgarians their hard earned money. Instead they claimed that the campaign was marred by misinformation.
So many times people have asked me to run either for Mayor for Councillor, I have always said NO. The reason is simple, you will be shocked to hear that I do not trust the political intelligence of voters, because they either do not know or do not want know about the issues before they go to the polls. So why should Calgarians, who found their candidates on the losing side be shocked? Because it is pure and simple: much of the electorate did not really understand what they were voting for. Once again, they just based their votes on what they heard not what they knew. That’s why I was shocked by the results, but not shocked that Calgarians will get the Council they deserve.

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Kneeling, or ‘Taking a knee’

When President Trump attacked the millionaire football players of the National Football League (NFL), uproar arose after his call for players who do not respect the National Anthem to be fired. The media immediately jumped on the racism bandwagon and ignored the real story.

Kneeling was once commonly related to the action of getting on one’s bent knees to pray. But today the players of the NFL have decided to have a different definition by ‘taking a knee’ to protest during the rendition of the National Anthem before the games. The demonstration was started by Colin Kaepernick a Quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers who began protesting by not standing while the National Anthem was played before the games. He was protesting against the oppression of people of color in the United States. As his action gained national attention, players from other teams started to emulate him. Colin Kaepernick does not like the police, without proof he accuses them of being murderers and slave catchers. He also depicted cops as pigs on his socks.

There is no doubt that in the United States the ugly truth about racism still underlines many issues. Over the years there have been several police actions against the black population that have been proven to be of a racist nature. But we also ignore many statistical facts concerning the death of African American man at the hand of the police  and by other African Americans.
According to Attorney Peter Kirsanow of the U.S Commission on Civil Rights, the Department of Justice statistics show that blacks are 2.5 times more frequently killed by the police than whites. But what is ignored for example is that in New York blacks are 2.5 times more likely to commit crimes, 3.5 times more likely to commit robbery,38 times more likely to commit murders, and 51 times more likely to be involved in shooting resulting in homicide. As a result of a false narrative being used by politicians, the media and even President Obama, after the incident in Ferguson, the police, in many jurisdictions, like Baltimore, are less engaged in active policing.  As a consequence in 2015 there were 900 and 2016 another 900 more blacks killed by blacks. In fact black policemen are 3.3 times more likely to shoot blacks. New York used to have 314 shootings and 93 of them fatal. In 2015 it was 23 shootings and 3 fatal.

So here we are today, with professional athletes ‘taking a knee’ instead of standing during the national anthem. In my view, the President should not have used the words ‘sons of birches’ to describe these protesters, but he was right to demand that the team owners fire the protesters for demonstrating their disrespect for the flag and the anthem. The irony is that these players are employees and in any other venue employees displaying that kind of behaviour would be summarily fired. In contrast, Washington state high school football coach Joe Kennedy, was fired for kneeling in prayer; A few years ago NFL quarterback Tim Tebow ‘took a knee” in prayer on a football field and was criticized by a lurid part of society. Players who wanted to wear a patch on their uniform to remember the victims of 9/11 were forbidden to do so.

The real issue is that the owners do not have the guts to stop the demonstration against the National Anthem and the flag. They are thinking about fan support, tickets sales and revenues, which by the way are dwindling.

This protest may be warranted but it is also based on a false narrative perpetuated by the leftist media. Everybody has a right to protest, however it is the place and time that really matters in this case. To disrespect the soldiers and first responders is abhorrent. To do it in a foreign country is even worse. These protesters could have chosen to ‘take a knee’ before the game and not during the National Anthem, or better still like Ray Lewis the former Ravens NFL player take both knees and pray.

Trumps’ opponents’ should look at the real issue and context of his comments. I ponder in light of the tragedy in Las Vegas, if the victims and public would have preferred to have NFL players instead of first responders, including policemen, and military personnel to protect and help them?

Sunday, 17 September 2017

The Art of ‘punting’ a Political Football

When George. W Bush called Iran, Iraq and North Korea the axis of evil; he was crucified by the media for saying so. Today, Trump has inherited a new axis of evil with Iran, North Korea and Islamist Terrorists. Furthermore the immigration issue has been a thorn in past administrations for decades and still has not been resolved. Why do these problems take decades to be solved?

Let us look at the most pressing issue of the day: The Democratic Peoples’ Republic of Korea (DPRK). For years the world has turned a blind eye to North Korea’s nuclear ambitions. Today we have reached a critical mass. North Korea has a nuclear and perhaps a Hydrogen bomb. More critically they are making huge progress in their ability to possess Intercontinental Missiles that could deliver a nuclear device to the United States. The United Nations and U.S administrations have never dealt with North Korea for fear of retaliations against South Korea. Sanctions have not really worked because China is the DPRK’s staunchest supporter. Most of the North Korea’s trade is with China, and for years the Chinese have used the DPRK as a foil against the U.S. As the threats from this rogue nation increases and puts the world on the brink of a possible nuclear war, the world is still talking about diplomacy. While I am not for an all-out war I believe that the options of a military solution should be on the table. Trump will be blamed for whatever decision he makes, the question is will he make the right decision? His predecessors have, by their inactions, enabled three generations of the Kim dynasty to threaten the world. China has not been able to curtail North Korea’s belligerence; Talks and United Nations sanctions have not worked and in my view will not work. We seem to be repeating another Chamberlain ’Peace in our time’ moment.
While all wars are catastrophic, I suggest that a military action is necessary before something cataclysmic happens.
I will defer the ultimate decisions to generals McMaster and Mattis for obvious reasons. But I would use a first strike using an Electromagnetic bomb to be detonated in the atmosphere over North Korea, and once the grids have been disabled a massive attack with conventional weapons should be undertaken to take out the regime for good. South Korea could then rebuild the whole unified country.

Then there is the ever growing immigration issue which has plagued so many administrations. At issue is Trump’s statement that he will make a deal with the Democrats to abolish the now deemed unconstitutional Obama’s ‘memorandum’ Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). The result of this immigration memo was to protect children brought into the U.S illegally by their parents. Any action would perhaps affect some 800,000 now grown up persons. It is also believed that many of these so-called ‘dreamers’ may also apply to workers who came to the U.S on a legal work permit but who have overstayed their legal residence permit. The problem is that many of the dreamers are already in the workforce and in the military where they have served honorably. Despite the fact that many Republicans believe that Trump’s deal may be tantamount to amnesty, it is unconceivable that children who are not responsible for the illegal acts of their parents, and have no ties to any other country should be deported. Therefore in my view Trump can use the ‘art of the deal’ to finally put a stop to this huge flaw in the immigration laws that irk many U.S citizens. Tying up any DACA concession to a complete reform of the immigration laws and building a wall is the best negotiations tools left to the President to fulfill a campaign promise.

Of course Trump will be opposed by both the right and the left, who ironically have been the culprits in kicking the can down the road on both these issues. The world cannot wait for a reckless North Korean idiot to start a nuclear war; pre-emptive action must be taken. As for DACA it must be resolved to eliminate the growing globalists view that we should live in a world without borders.
Given the current circumstances I would rather see the ‘art of the deal’ instead of another punting of a political football.

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Who is a Canadian?

Citizenship is the status  or position of a person being a legal member of a sovereign state.  You are a citizen either by birth or by application. Each country has different rules, but in the end, in my view, it is not a right, it is a privilege which should be cherished and respected. So why is Canada so enamoured with dual citizenship, and how citizenship laws are applied?

 To be eligible to apply for Canadian citizenship, a person must fulfill a number of requirements. Currently the conditions include the following: Permanent resident status, time you have lived in Canada, tax filing and language abilities. You may not be eligible, for a certain period of time, if you have committed a crime in or outside of Canada

Governments of different ilk have over the years defined and changed the Citizenship Act to suit their political agenda. In 2008, The Conservatives have placed more emphasis on Canada’s diversity values, and past history. In 2017 Liberals are changing the laws but they have yet issued their views of what really defines a Canadian.  As C.P Champion writes in the National Post:  “The citizenship guide must do more than reproduce bon mots. It needs to explain why: Why is Canada a successful society, why do we enjoy “ordered liberty,” and why do we have “unity in diversity”

While we wait to see what the Liberal citizenship test study guide, there are some concerns as to how current laws are being applied in different cases where Canadian citizenship can be revoked.

For example Helmut Oberlander, 93, of Waterloo, Ont., accused of hiding or lying about his past service with a Nazi death squad prior to becoming a Canadian citizen in 1960, has had his Canadian citizenship stripped four times, and yet he is still in the country and challenging the order.

Under Trudeau’s Bill C-6, Canadian judges no longer have the ability to strip citizenship from dual nationals convicted of terrorism. Zakaria Amara the leader of the so-called Toronto 18, who planned al-Qaeda inspired terrorist attacks on The Toronto Stock Exchange, The CBC and a siege on Parliament Hill, is now protected from losing his citizenship.

Trudeau believes that: “revocation of citizenship can and should happen in situations of becoming a Canadian citizen on false pretences. Furthermore he also stated that: “Canadian is a Canadian is a Canadian”—even if that “Canadian” is a foreign-born agent convicted of terrorism—was never clear, and that stripping citizenship from foreign-born terrorists amounted to “two-tiered citizenship,” and yet, somehow revocation for lying or covering up war crimes was justifiable. Under Trudeau’s idiotic logic, because the government would have lost a legal case, we also paid $10.6 million to a convicted terrorist, who happens to be a Canadian citizen.
All these government decisions regarding citizenship brings forth the other argument: Should we allow dual citizenship? If we  are  willing to strip Canadian  citizenship from a former Nazis, what about those people who have dual citizenship and use Canadian passports to protect themselves and then commit acts of terrorism against Canada and its allies. Should they be deprived of their Canadian citizenship and sent back to their other country of citizenship? In the eyes of the current government why is there  a difference made between a former Nazi and a convicted terrorist?
In my opinion, dual citizenship in this era of terrorism is no longer a viable proposal. One should hold a citizenship of choice and swear allegiance to only one state. We can no longer protect people who have allegiances with other states. With, many refugees being accepted and granted citizenship in a very short period, we run the risk of having more dual citizenship Canadians. This does not bode well if many of these refugees decide to go back to their country of origin after being granted Canadian citizenship. Years ago many Lebanese were given Canadian citizenship and after being eligible to collect Canadian benefits they returned to Lebanon, to once again face a war. As a result Canadian taxpayers were forced to spend millions to re-patriate those with a Canadian citizenship. I have no doubt that this situation may once again happen with Syrian refugees.
While citizenship cannot be denied to a Canadian born in this country, it would be wise to start rethinking the policies of granting citizenship to immigrants and refugees who would want to keep their other citizenships By the same token should our elected officials be allowed to have dual citizenship?  Other countries like Australia and now Pakistan do not allow dual citizens to hold government office. In Canada we have Mulcair and Dion as examples of dual citizens holding office.
 As an immigrant I renounced all my citizenship ties with my country of origin. I was given a Canadian citizenship and I am extremely proud of it.  In my view it is a privilege and not a right for an immigrant to become a Canadian, therefore you should become a Canadian and nothing else.  A Canadian is a Canadian but not a half-Canadian. Isn’t it time for our government to demand that if you become a Canadian that you renounce your previous citizenship? The only good thing about dual citizenship is that the government can choose to return the perpetrator of a crime to his country of origin – that is if the government has the resolve to do so.

Saturday, 29 July 2017

Beware of Pseudo Conservatives

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) was designed to ultimately be established as a socialist health system. The strategy was that it would be so expensive that if Hillary Clinton had won the elections, it would automatically be turned into a single payer system. So why after six months of a Trump presidency, the disastrous system is still in place?

Since the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) was passed by the Democrats without any support from the Republicans, the latter have been promising to repeal and replace it. With a Republican President in the White House and a majority in both the House of Representatives and the Senate, they still fail to keep their promise.

Both the conservatives and the moderates in the Republican Party cannot come to an agreement how to repeal and replace the (ACA). Seemingly, the conservatives want to repeal and make the system less costly to be able to reduce taxes. The moderates would like to keep the government’s funding of Medicaid. With only a majority of two in the Senate, it becomes very difficult to pass a bill if more than two Senators vote against it. With only two defections the Vice-President can cast his deciding vote and thus pass the bill.
After some arduous tries to get something done after the House had already voted and passed their version of an alternative to Obamacare, the Senate ultimately got the courage to take their version of repeal and replace to the floor. The leadership knew full well that Senators: Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska were always going to vote ‘NO”. Not expecting any other defections, the Republicans counted on a vote by the Vice-President to break the tie and get the bill passed.

After being diagnosed and operated for brain surgery, and knowing that a crucial vote to repeal and replace Obamacare was going to take place he made what is called a heroic return to the Senate to take part in the vote. He pleaded for bipartisanship in an impassioned speech when  he called for the Senate to make sure that a vote took place. Every Senator and the American public characterised his speech as seminal and his return to the floor as heroic.

In the past he had opposed Obamacare. But on the crucial vote at 1.30 am on Friday 28th of July 2017, the maverick John McCain could not get away from the drama and self-centred decision, he voted “NO’ and as a result killed the Republican bill to repeal and replace Obamacare; thus helping the Democrats and self–aggrandizing himself in the history books.

McCain the long-time Senior Senator from Arizona has been a Republican in Name Only (RINO) for years. Revered by many because of his wartime service and capture by the Vietcong, he has, over the years, played a significant role in the Republican Party. He twice sought the Presidency of the United States; he lost to George W. Bush in the 2000 primary, and then lost to Obama in 2008.

In my view Senator McCain is a dejected politician who could not live with the fact that his past political decisions and stance on some issues prevented him from ever being President of the United States. Although well-regarded by many, his failure to be a true conservative had made him a less than powerful force in the party. Furthermore, his relationship with President Trump was never a good one after candidate Trump had refused to call him a hero during the campaign. Trump ignored Newton’s  third law that states:” For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. The actions of McCain in my view was a calculated on;
It is reported that when asked how he would vote he replied ‘Wait for the show’. When it was his turn to vote, he looked at the reporters and then the ceiling and shouted ‘NO’.  He came back to a heroic welcome, he voted ‘NO’ in a vindictive manner to send a resounding, and thunderous ‘F*** U’ to Trump.  Once again as a true RINO he placed his personal feelings ahead of the party and the nation, and voted with the Democrats, He then decided to return to Arizona where perhaps he may never return to the Senate again due to his illness. In my opinion, he accomplished what he always wanted to do – be a thorn in the Republican Party that he always wanted to lead and was never capable of doing.

To conservatives, let the McCain actions be a warming to you. Very often the conservative movement has seen rifts among the ranks. Closer to home, in Alberta, watch out for the progressives who have for years been hiding among true conservatives. They have never had the guts to call themselves Liberals but will vote with the left when it will suit their political aspirations.
 It is often said to beware of a woman’s scorn, but in politics be very aware of wounded and dejected politicians. They may not only hurt the party but more treacherously the nation.