Monday, October 27, 2008

10 Years Later

Today is the tenth anniversary of the National Post. Say what you will about the MSM, but can you imagine what Canada would be like if it had never existed?

From the beginning, the Post provided intellectual support to a Canadian conservative viewpoint that was sadly lacking in other Canadian media. The headline on the October 27, 1998 first edition was "Klein backs unite-the-right movement". Well it turns out they did. And now we have a Conservative government.

Happy birthday National Post!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Diefenbaker's Manifesto on Freedom of Speech

In my days as a young lawyer, I began the drafting of a Canadian Bill of Rights. The 1938 election manifesto of the Conservative Party in Saskatchewan, authored by me and issued under my leadership, began with the following statement:

"The Conservative party pledges itself to maintain the rights of freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom of religion, and freedom of the press, reaffirms its implicit belief in democracy and democratic institutions, and its absolute opposition to the principles of both Fascism and Communism."

One Canada, Memoirs of the Right Honourable JGD, The Years of Acheivement 1957-1962, MacMillan of Canada, 1976 pg 252

That was 70 years ago.

In 1960, after winning two landslide majorities, the Rt. Hon. John G. Diefenbaker and his government prevailed, and passed the Canadian Bill of Rights.

That was 48 years ago. Have we "progressed"?

Monday, October 20, 2008

What would Dief do with the HRCs?

Early on in his career, former Conservative Prime Minister John G. Diefenbaker recognized the threat to freedom of speech and individual liberty:

I was concerned in 1936 about the continuing extension of the powers of the Crown at the expense of the individual. My concern was greatly intensified by experiences during and after the Second World War. On 2 May 1946, I moved an amendment to the Citizenship Bill in an attempt to have a Bill of Rights included in its provisions. I wanted to see Canadians assured by statute of freedom of religion, freedom of speech, and the right to peaceable assembly; that habeas corpus should not be suspended except by Parliament; and that no one should be required to give evidence before any tribunal or commission at any time if denied counsel or other constitutional safeguards. My amendment was opposed by the King government.

"One Canada", Memoirs of the Right Honourable JGD, The Years of Acheivement 1957-1962, MacMillan of Canada, 1976 pg 252

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Canadian and Free

I am a Canadian, a free Canadian, free to speak without fear, free to worship God in my own way, free to stand for what I think right, free to oppose what I believe wrong, free to choose who shall govern my country. This heritage of freedom I pledge to uphold for myself and all mankind.

The Right Honourable John G. Diefenbaker, Prime Minister of Canada, House of Commons Debates, July 1, 1960

Diefenbaker said this in the debates for the Canadian Bill of Rights. Since that time, something has gone terribly wrong. It will take a Conservative majority government to get us back on track.

It's election day. Go vote.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Best reason for an elected senate

Stéphane Dion has reportedly been wooing Elizabeth May with a Senate seat in return for telling Green Party supporters to vote Liberal.

Reforming or Abolishing the Senate
The Conservatives and Stephen Harper believe that the current Senate must be either reformed or abolished. An unelected Senate should not be able to block the will of the elected House in the 21st century.

As a minimum, a re-elected Conservative Government will reintroduce legislation to allow for nominees to the Senate to be selected by voters, to provide for Senators to serve fixed terms of not longer than eight years, and for the Senate to be covered by the same ethics rules as the House of Commons.

After Gerard Kennedy loses Parkdale-High Park, will he expect a Senate appointment too?

Saturday, October 11, 2008

An economist at the helm

As the global economy heads into troubled waters, Canada is fortunate to have Stephen Harper, an economist, at the helm. Let's just hope the voters resist the sirens' call to put Stéphane "do something" Dion at the helm.

Paradoxically, perhaps, the fact that orthodox economics has a good deal to say about how the Great Depression happened itself suggests that there is after all something puzzling about the Great Depression. What's puzzling is not that the depression happened, given policies that were resorted to, but that such destructive policies secured wide support despite their often readily-predictable, adverse consequences. But to call even such perversity a "mystery" is to be guilty of hyperbole. After all, politicians are rewarded for appearing to "do something," and not for their command of "abstract" theories.

h/t: Cafe Hayek

Monday, October 06, 2008

Toronto hates Conservatives Part 2

I do not like small dead animals, especially when I find a stinking, decaying carcass on my front step. Oh, did I mention I have a Conservative sign in my front yard?

Is Carolyn Bennett running scared?

This is just too despicable to imagine an opponent being responsible for, particularly as it is more likely to help rather than hurt the Bennett campaign.

Carolyn Bennett should have a stranglehold on the riding given her margin of victory last election. Nonetheless, I think she is running scared.

Dr. Roy has already noted that Bennett broke the rules by distributing her House of Commons newsletter after the writ was dropped. I can vouch for this, since I live in the riding and received it after the election was called. Particularly galling is the fact that the content of the newsletter, which is virtually indistinguishable from election literature, was paid for by the taxpayers of St. Paul's.

I have been out canvassing for Heather Jewell, the Conservative candidate in the riding. It was discouraging at first, but lately people seem to be more receptive, though the chilliest responses still seem to be concentrated in some of the richest neighbourhoods.

But there is hope: the Conservative message is getting through. Blue signs have been sprouting up in my decidedly downscale neighbourhood during the past week. Forget the Toronto elites. Follow the people.