Thursday, February 17, 2011

Three Blind Mice and the Think-Tank Dance

Watching our government on the run, trying to justify spending billions of dollars of taxpayer's money on prison expansion, for the corporate sector who will be taking them over, reminds me of The Three Blind Mice. Not sure why, but maybe because it's just so darn comical. And a little sad given the fate of those now tail-less mice.

But you know they're in trouble when the "think-tanks" have to come to their rescue. That myriad of bogus "non-partisan" spin doctors, who draft policy for our hapless horde of ministers.

This time they went right to the top. The Civitas Society, where Stephen Harper laid out his plans for a theocracy and Republican pollster Frank Luntz told Harpo to talk about hockey every 14 seconds if he hoped to ever get a majority.

Jason Kenney hangs out there, as do all of Harper's buddies from his old haunt, the Northern Foundation. I don't think he makes a move without first consulting their Ouija board.

The Three Blind Mice and Canada's Crime in the Streets

1. Stockwell Day - Blind mouse number one. This man only has a high school education and believes that if it isn't in the Old Testament it's not worth discussing. An eye for eye, etc. When the prison expansion plans were announced, the question was why, when Canada's crime rate was the lowest in our history. Their plans will cost taxpayers billions of dollars, not only in the original design and construction costs, but in paying the corporate sector to run them, which is always at least double what we could do it for.

So Stocky in all his wisdom claimed that the prisons were for "unreported crimes". Thank heavens for the Ouija boards, which will replace the gun registry and all other tools used by police. I hear one is being installed in every officer's vehicle.

2. Scott Newark - Blind mouse number two - After Stocky's announcement and the laughter died down, a name began appearing in all the papers, in support of Day. Scott Newark, who agreed with the notion of the mystical criminals lurking in every bush and around every street corner.

He had seen them (insert eerie music). And furthermore, we should listen to him because he is with .... drum roll please .... a "think tank". A "non-partisan think-tank". An "award winning non-partisan think-tank". For now we'll ignore the fact that this award also went to the Koch brothers and their Cato Institute. We're in enough trouble without going down that road, where the real criminals hang out. Suffice it to say that the Koch brothers are backers of the Tea Party, and sometimes walk funny with Stephen Harper's hands in their pockets.

For those who don't know, Newark is a former policy adviser to Day and was once involved in a lobbying scandal, also known as an "unreported crime", bilking taxpayers out of more than $300,000. Oops!

3. Brian Lee Crowley - Blind mouse number three - with Crowley taking time out of his busy schedule to weigh in on the issue, you know they are now in desperation mode. Crowley is the big cheese, founder of yet another "non-partisan think-tank". And if you don't believe they are non-partisan they have christened their new endeavour the Macdonald-Laurier Institute, after Sir John A. from Canada's now defunct Tory Party, and Wilfred Laurier, a former Liberal prime minister.

Crowley is past president of the Civitas Society and founder of the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies, a group pushing for "deep US-Canada integration with "Atlantica"

I never said they were sane.

According to Wikipedia, the MacDonald-Laurier Institute is "directed by high-profile businesspeople with an emphasis on lowering business taxes, reducing government spending, privatizing the healthcare system and "working toward a common security perimeter with the United States." In other words, they are running the Harper neocon agenda.

Oh, and did I mention that Crowley is also a policy adviser to Jim Flaherty, helping him to draft his budgets, and has been shrieking about lowering corporate taxcuts since he was old enough to go potty by himself.

These guys are so transparent and have the credibility of a gnat.

Study claiming crime on the rise gets shot down by experts
Criminologists say a study that attacks the long-standing measurement of Canada’s crime rate is “highly politicized” and without statistical merit. Crime and punishment appear to be shaping up as a defining ballot question when Canadians next go to the polls, so the statistically unorthodox claim that violent crime is on the rise is noteworthy.

Scott Newark, a former Harper government adviser who counts himself a contributor to the Conservatives’ 2006 justice platform, released the 29-page study last week questioning Statistics Canada’s methodology on compiling crime stats. Newark asserts that “many of the most common conclusions that are drawn about crime in Canada are in fact incorrect or badly distorted.” “Serious violent crime is increasing,” the former executive officer of the Canadian Police Association flatly asserts.

Although Newark’s report for the Macdonald-Laurier Institute was given prominent coverage by both the Globe and Mail and National Post, the wider academic community that relies on the data was not consulted.
Just who exactly is running our country anyway?


  1. "Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want and deserve to get it good and hard". H.L. Mencken

    This present political situation that we are ensnared in never ceases to bewilder me. We are under the boot of a bunch of malcontent, vindictive incompetents. The fact that there is any room in government for an undereducated guy like Stockwell Day should cause grave concern.
    We in Ontario remember all to well when our Harris appointed Minister of Education (Snobleton) had a grade ten education. When looking at the bio of of Michael Ignatieff, Monsieur Dion or the hapless Harper for that matter, one has to ask the question who is more suited to lead this country. It's academic really.

  2. Well said. Jason Kenney also only has a highschool education. In fact I think he dropped out before graduating.