Saturday 22 January 2005


Thoughts, please.

Is it just me? Or do these three people look eerily alike?

Mr. Jack MacLeod Jan Peter Balkenende
Daniel Radcliffe

(from top left: Mr. MacLeod, my Grade 11 physics teacher; Jan Peter Balkenende, Prime Minister of the Netherlands; and Daniel Radcliffe, star of the Harry Potter franchise)

Speaking of Republicans...

Yesterday morning, I was late for work. Overnight, a three-foot high and six-foot deep snowdrift blew my driveway shut. At some level, I consider this a bit of a blessing in disguise.

For, on the way into work, I had a chance to listen to The Current and guest host Bernard St. Laurent, and he had on a most intriguing guest. From the sound of his voice, I guess he was probably an older gentleman, not that it matters much. He seemed so passionate about what he was saying that I couldn't help but listen to what he was talking about, though, having turned the radio on in the middle of the interview, I have no idea what that topic was.

As the interview continued, I discovered he believed that legalizing same-sex marriage is the first step on the slippery slope of legalizing polygamy, incest, and the elimination of the age of consent. "Isn't it obvious to every Canadian", he asked, "that this is what's happening?" Bernard and this gentleman spoke for another couple of minutes, followed by another speaker on this topic. It was a younger woman, a lawyer of some kind if I recall correctly, who -- and I thought this was a superbly novel idea -- actually presented statistical evidence in support of her opposing viewpoint.

She also pointed out, quite correctly, that polygamy (S. 293), incest (S. 155) and child rape (S. 150-152) are already criminalized under the Criminal Code of Canada, with maximum sentences ranging from 5 to 14 years. Marriage isn't a crime; in fact, marriage is legal in every province, defined by that province's Marriage Act. In six provinces and one territory, the legal definition of marriage as "the union of one man and one woman, to the exclusion of all others" has been determined to be unconstitutional under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (1982).

Thank God. I was worried there for a second. I'm not having a whole lot of success finding even one wife at this point; finding two, or three, or six just seemed like too much work.

It turns out that the reason for all this chat on the topic is that Stephen Harper, Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada, is starting a great political offensive in support of the traditional definition of marriage. I wonder if he thinks all his female MPs -- including autoparts magnate Belinda Stronach, who looks just fine in a business suit, thank-you-very-much -- should actually be barefoot in the kitchen, in a long, flowing dress, instead of being International Trade critic in his Shadow Cabinet.

So, kudos to you, Stephen Harper; a Republican by any other name would smell as sweet.

Thursday 20 January 2005

Four More Years?

I decided to celebrate the inaugural of George W. Bush's second four-year term as President of the United States by making my triumphant return to the blogging scene, after a much-noticed and occasionally maligned month-long absence. An absence characterized by such pointed observations as:

  • Why have a blog when you never post?

  • Really - why have a blog when you never post?

My fellow readers and I were able to pop back right with some incisive answers, such as no comment, and "Well, duh. Obviously."

I was gone because I had nothing to write about. By which I mean, I really have everything to write about, and all the time in the world to think about writing it, and neither the time nor the energy to write about it. I promise to get around to it sooner or later. Saturday afternoon looks free at this point. Maybe then. ;-)

There is new layout, you've probably noticed. I've been planning to design a new one, but I suck and actually only managed to succeed in breaking the old design so badly I needed to upgrade to a new version of WordPress, which happened to include this current (very neat) layout. What do you think? Stick with this? Or design something on my own?

I will get back on topic for a second though, to ask for your opinions on George W. Bush? Tyrant? Wizard? Purveyor of freedom? Harbinger of apocalypse? As far as I can tell from the media, he seems to be a generally decent fellow who gets lousy advice from a bunch of fawning sycophants who refuse to tell him he's wrong sometimes when they should. Maybe not a genius IQ, but you don't get to be a slobbering idiot and President at the same time.

End incoherent collection of ideas.

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