Welcome to the second, less frequently-posted decade of RevMod.

Contact me at revmod AT gmail.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Alt Music Friday

After last week's more challenging and arty Final Fantasy, here's some straight-up rock and roll - Toronto's Tokyo Police Club. Perhaps hearts broken by Ignatieff's acquiescence this week can tessellate into a real opposition.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


So the Prime Minister decided to release a budget that the Liberals can mostly accept? A budget that doesn't contain the sorts of poison pills the Fiscal Update did? If only.

Harper was astute enough to realize he couldn't use the budget to attack his Parliamentary opponents, the way he tried in November. But that didn't keep him from attacking opponents outside of Parliament. Just ask Danny Williams. Or the public service unions. (Hat tip to pogge for the latter link.)

It's this Harper that needs to be defeated - it's this Harper who doesn't deserve the confidence of the House. But the Liberal party will put political expediency above the national good, and will continue to play ball with this megalomaniacal small-time Machiavelli.

Hope Ignatieff finds a pair one day soon.

Monday, January 26, 2009

It stopped being about the budget two months ago

Let's review where we are, shall we?

Before the Governor-General reads the throne speech today, she's going to be swearing in 18 new senators - appointments that should not have been made, or should have been refused by the Governor-General, until the Prime Minister proved he had the confidence of the House.

The reason we don't know if he has the confidence of the House is because the Governor-General let him suspend parliament in the face of losing a vote, just like they do in your more civilized Banana Republics. But the opposition might have changed their mind since then, since the Liberals helped with the second stage of any Banana Republic-style centralization of power - they had the Leader of the Opposition disappeared.

And let's not forget where this started - when the government felt a world-wide financial crisis was excellent cover to de-fund the opposition parties.

Suspending Parliament was arrogant. In Canada, the Prime Minister serves at the pleasure of Parliament, not the other way around. Continuing to act like Prime Minister without proving that confidence, particularly with the Senate appointments, moves into the territory of hubris. Now the Prime Minister is playing another game of chicken with the new Liberal leader, "playing games with budget leaks" as Mr. Ignatieff himself put it. This looks like an early sign of the government governing exactly the way they did before the last election: pushing the Liberals into a corner again and again just to watch the creative ways the Liberals could fold their cards, again and again.

The budget might just provide Mr. Ignatieff with a fig leaf's worth of cover to back down from defeating this government, and I feel certain that if it does, Iggy's going to take it. But Harper has spent nearly every day since the last election making a mockery of our fundamental democratic institutions. He attacked the opposition as anti-democratic, and possibly even seditious, even as his behavior suggested a lack of understanding, or a lack of respect, for Canadian parliamentary tradition. His government came very close to defeat, his career very nearly ended, and instead of using the eight weeks since to show any sort of contrition for that behavior, he's once again engaged in brinkmanship with the Liberal Party. I hope, for the sake of Canada's parliamentary democracy, that Mr. Ignatieff is willing to take a stand, to help escort this usurper from 24 Sussex Drive.

I suggested at the suspension of Parliament that Mr. Harper should have done his party a favour and stepped aside. Time's up. It's no longer about the budget. Really, it never was.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Alt music Friday

Time to modernize the blog a little. I've noticed around the webtubes that people like myself, with no particular talent of our own to speak of, have been filling the occasional blog post simply with talented others. With no Parliament sitting yet ("Coalition if necessary, but not necessarily a coalition"? Hope Iggy finds a pair before the budget), and nothing but rainbows and unicorns and puffy clouds coming from our southern neighbours (Even David Brooks reported favourably from the conservative columnist dinner last week: "[Obama] very considerately asked me what vintage of wine I wanted my water turned into."), I've got to fill this page with something, and what could be better than that talented young fella Owen Pallett, aka Final Fantasy? I mean, who samples loops of violin? Here he is, live in Halifax:

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The long nightmare is almost over

In a couple of hours, Barack Obama will be President of the United States. He has recieved enormous goodwill from around the world, including from here in Canada - I'd suggest the goodwill toward the United States is nearly as high as it was on September 12, 2001. Whatever else historians will note about Bush 43, the way he used unilateralism (on climate change, on SDI, primarily on Iraq) to screw away that goodwill will be long remembered.

I'm looking forward to seeing if Obama has learned that lesson.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

A rhetorical question

Why does the American media require Jon Stewart to point out that Israel is not blamelessly defending herself in the current conflict? Why is he the one to point out the siege Gazans live under, that might make them angry and desperate enough to fire rockets (albeit rockets that can't be aimed and are unlikely to do any damage to people or property)? Why has the American media been perfectly happy to swallow the propaganda of the Israeli government whole, the same way they swallowed the American propaganda leading to the invasion and occupation of Iraq? Don't these people learn anything?

So, I suppose that's several rhetorical questions.