Here's to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the
round pegs in the square holes... the ones who see things differently -- they're
not fond of rules... You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify
them, but the only thing you can't do is ignore them because they change
things... they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the
crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that
they can change the world, are the ones who do.

Steve Jobs
US computer engineer & industrialist (1955 - 2011)

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Democracy, Censorship, and Spin

The one thing that can be said of the provincial PC Party in Newfoundland and Labrador is they love their spin. They are incredibly bad at it, but when it's the only game you have you go with it. In this Province it is the only game they have. The truth be damned should it in any way interfere with the game. Certainly these words must be hanging on a Confederation Building wall next to the "To hell with the rest of the country" sign. A really inspiring set of motto's to run a provincial government by.

We just finished up a darling of a by-election in Humber West. A west coast seat vacated by former Premier Danny Williams. The PC candidate won the seat with a healthy 63% of the popular vote (39% overall turn out). Low turnout always favours the incumbent government, and this was no different. There were some interesting facts that surfaced though. Most interesting I suppose was the no show by Ms Dunderdale on the night before polls closed. Every other party leader was out there -  not her. In her place was one retired Danny Williams. While you can't blame the PC's for trotting out the ex premier, and using him for his popularity, it does beg the question: Is Ms Dunderdale that big of a liability? It sort of fits with the use of her decade old picture on all governmental and party advertising. A Premier who is so illegitimate that her presence seems to emphasize the fact on it's own.

Another interesting result of the by-election was the drop in the PC Party's popular vote by almost 25%. Interesting in that it reflects a drift away from the PC's in a seat that is essentially safe for the governing party. If Danny William's old seat, tried and true, could lose 25% support what about the rest? Could it be the PCs have lost 25-30% support across the Province? Would that put them at say between 40-45% or less provincially? While Ms Dunderdale is harking on about their perfect plan to win Humber West is she really casting a weary eye to the Province as a whole? How much lower can it go? How large is the undecided?

Then we have the case of the Roger's family, and their tragic loss of their children. Despite massive media coverage of the issue the provincial government continues to deny these people access to their children. Bad enough to be sure. Now, believe it or not, the PC government is going to Court Thursday to have a media ban placed on the whole issue. In case you don't know, this issue has been in the media for at least 6 weeks, and now they want a ban. Of course the usual talk of protecting the children has been thrown out there, but this has been in the media for over a month. Can you say spin? What good could a media ban do now? There is only one possible answer to that - shut the media down. The government, in another blatant abuse of power, is trying to shut down our freedom of expression in the Courts. The reasoning is for the purely political death of this issue. Censorship of the media and the issues they discuss - pure and simple. Another line crossed - not many left.

George W Bush probably said it best: " Don't piss on my boots and tell me it's raining." The PC government in this Province has insulted the intelligence of all with it's ridiculous spins. Whether it is peekaboo Premiers, phantom principles, democracy of convenience, you name it they have done it. It's as if they think the people here live under rocks and are blind and stunned. It's as if they believe our collective backbone is measured in government payoffs and not in principle. I believe they are wrong. I believe in this place and it's people. I believe in our future together - spin that.


  1. Now "you" I like !

    NTV did a poll to find out if Harper was doing better since Williams (almost) vacated the scene . 36 % now feel free to express that .

    What worries me , is whether or not the media will take this "ban" lying down ?

  2. Ursula, I believe some of the media may not fight it, but the talk shows might. Frankly, I believe they should all ask for intevenor status in Court to explain the futilty of a ban at this point - and it's obvious political bias.

  3. Brad , this is Newfoundland and Labrador 2011 and we are in retrograde . We have a government that is looking to put a restraint on free speech . We have a premier who is being shadowed by a personal security detail. Williams made it a point in The National Post , of joking about his being able to shop at Canadian Tire without security .

    There is a theory that NL. is ten years behind the rest of the country . I don't think that that necessarily applies any longer , with the advent of big oil , we are being dragged into a sophisticated world that is not designed for an uncomplicated people . There are inherent dangers and risks involved in these sort of transformations and it is people who usually pay a high price for the indiscretions of a few .

  4. Ursula, I agree that the people pay the price for the few. That is why the few have unwritten codes of conduct for power and influence. The crowd in St. John's have broken these rules. Therefore, the unwritten laws of order says they must go. We have to be ready to bring in a new era of politics here. Just as you said "wouldn't it be ironic if...", and I fully intend to make sure that is the case.

  5. "intevenor status".

    That was a good one on me Brad . I have been trying to figure out what intevenor status is .

    It finally clicked , it is a typo , it should read intervenor status . I can see CBC possibly going that route , but , VOCM ?

  6. Thank you Ursula, that was my fault as I typed it while Brad dictated. My bad, Katie

  7. Hi Katie , I see we may have similar situations , Gordon and I have been together for thirty years and I can't do a thing right if he is within a 10' radius .

    You gotta love 'em though .


Comments are welcome that contribute to the discussion or foster further debate.

In the interests of ensuring that people take responsibility for their own words, individuals can make comments using their Blogger ID or OpenID.

Profiles should be open to the public and reveal an e-mail address so that people may contact the commenter directly.

Anonymous comments, including those from people using fake, apparently fake identities, or profiles without contact information may be deleted. Spam will be deleted as soon as it is identified.