Saturday, November 08, 2008

Bonnie Raitt is 59 today

One Hit Wonder

Sinead O'Connor - Nothing Compares 2 U (1990)

Mug Shot of the Week

A week late but here is someone into the Holloween spirit.

Canada Quiz

1. Canada's largest city is...

a) Toronto
b) Montreal
c) Scarborough
d) has yet to be built

2. Canada's biggest export is...

a) Todd Bertuzzi
b) wheat
c) Mad Cow Disease
d) maple syrup

3. The Prime Minister of Canada is...

a) Don Cherry
b) Nicolas Sarkozy
c) Roggie Vachon
d) Stephen Harper

4. The Toronto Maple Leafs are...

a) a cash cow owned by the Ontario Teachers Pension Plan
b) raked over ever spring instead of fall
c) a national symbol of overspending, mismanagement and futility
d) all of the above

5. A beaver tail is...

a) a flat donut with sugar on top
b) a virgin college freshmen
c) only found in Laval, Quebec
d) sold at the Hudson Bay Company for 3 arrow heads

6. Stompin' Tom Connors is...

a) the Alberta Minister of Culture and Recreation
b) scored the winning goal in the 1988 Stanley Cup finals
c) operates the biggest chicken wing chain in Canada
d) wrote the Hockey Song

7. The City of Mississauga is best known for...

a) beer
b) gay marriages
c) a 87 year old broad named Hazel
d) ice sculptures

8. An invention created in Canada includes...

a) the socialist welfare state
b) the time zones
c) the donut hole
d) tuques

9. Bob and Doug Mackenzie ...

a) were really Rick and Dave
b) discovered the Great Lakes
c) were not Canadians
d) had their own TV show

10. The Calgary Stampede ...

a) killed 43 Canadians in 1964
b) is actually held on Cape Breton Island
c) fought in both World War I and II
d) is a rodeo

Some Things Never Change


Friday, November 07, 2008

Joni Mitchell is 65

Jessica Biels Worst Regret: Posing Nude

Back in 2000, a 17 year-old Jessica Biel did some nude photos for Gear after losing a lead role in American Beauty. She now says they’re her biggest regret. You know what? Not one of mine. Besides, it’s not like we’ll never see her nude in a magazine again, the way her career’s going.

What can Canada expect from President Obama?

Prime Minister Harper was quick to compliment Barack Obama and noted that his election was an inspiration. The speed in which he contact Obama suggests 2 things. One, relationships with the Bush administration weren’t so good despite the fact that both governments are conservative. Two, as Harper tries to move to the centre of the political spectrum, a closer relationship with the President-elect reinforces that image.

Our new centrist Prime Minister wants to work more closely with America on energy and the environment – issues that were not much of a priority for Harper in his first mandate. However, both leaders will likely have to focus on the economic situation early in their mandates.

Obama’s position on the two wars in the Middle East will favour Canada. Obama has indicated that he would like to shift attention from Iraq to Afghanistan where Canadian troops have been doing a significant share of the grunt work. Canada still plans to withdraw from Afghanistan in 2011. What if Obama asks Canada to delay its withdrawal? Harper insists that the withdrawal date is firm.

Although earlier in the campaign Obama raised concerns about possibly revisiting NAFTA, he has since backed away from that position, and is not likely to get into that kind of mess anytime soon. But let’s not forget about the Canadian government’s foolish attempt tilt U.S. voters to John McCain by leaking an embarrassing Obama NAFTA memo. I bet Obama hasn’t forgotten.
Don't expect a president Obama to lighten up much on homeland security, or at least not until Americans tell him the cost of doing cross-border business is too high. (So, Canadians, renew your passports early.)

If you go to the Obama website and his campaign speeches, you won't find much about Canada — indeed, you won't find anything. Which means don’t expect much attention from the new president. He’s got bigger fish to fry.

Dog busted for driving a car without insurance

A dog waiting in a car while at a car wash slipped the vehicle into gear and drove in a loop before the car came to a stop. Pryor police officer Brent Crittenden said the dog's owner was washing the vehicle when the 70-pound pit bull jumped on the dash and somehow shifted the car into reverse.

The car backed out of the car wash bay, continued onto a highway and then looped around before coming to a stop at an automated car wash lane.

Crittenden said the vehicle was impounded because its owner was unable to provide proof of insurance.

Patriot cheerleader fired for being too liberal with a sharpie

The Patriots kicked Caitlin Davis off the cheerleading squad after two photos of her appeared on Facebook. In the pictures Caitlin is drawing on the face and body of a pass-out friend. Mostly she drew penises and wrote the word penis on the guy's face. But the swastikas and the words "I'm Jewish" went a little too far.

It didn't help that Patriots owner Robert Kraft is a prominent Jew and active in the Anti-Defamation League.

Who is going to tell Piper she can't keep the Louis Vuitton bag

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Does Sarah Palin have a political future

A lot has changed for the Alaskan Governor over the past 70 days. She has gone from a political obscurity to daily coverage. Sarah Palin has political aspirations. She even expressed them to Nicholas Sarkozy in a recent phone call - oops lets not go there. And she continues to the the darling of social conservatives in America. But with every losing campaign there are the inevitable scapegoats and the knives are out for Palin.

Newsweek teased details in its special Election issue about the tensions between the McCain and Palin camps. For instance, McCain adviser Nicole Walls was "told buy [Palin] three suits for the convention and hire a stylist. But instead, the vice presidential nominee began buying for herself and her family—clothes and accessories from top stores such as Saks Fifth Avenue and Neiman Marcus." Sources say that not only was the wealthy donor who bought the clothes "shocked when he got the bill." An "angry aide" told Newsweek the Palins were "Wasilla hillbillies looting Neiman Marcus from coast to coast."

Sure Newsweek is part of the Liberal media so maybe not everyone is willing to buy these innuendos. And then Fox News reporter Carl Cameron spills his off-the-record (until now) guts on how Palin allegedly didn't know that Africa was a continent, didn't know the countries in North America, and basic civics. She refused help before her interview with Katie Couric and also, too, she could be really mean.

There are stories coming out that Palin wanted to do a concession speech on election night but was turned down by McCain. As well the fake Sarkozy call was on Palin's calendar for several days but no bothered to inform McCain's camp.

I expect more damaging reports will come out. Which means that Sarah Palin will continue to be under the public spotlight for some time to come. It's a good thing she is a tough lady.

A.J. Burnett: going, going, gone

It was obvious as A.J. Burnett began racking up the wins this past summer that his days as a Blue Jay were numbered. His agent didn’t negotiate a hard to come by opt out clause so he could ignore it and try to reprise his 2008 season as a Blue Jay again.

I don’t really blame him. An athlete’s career is short and the work is high risk. You have to maximize your income during your most productive years. For every athlete who plays on a preferred team for a slight discount (Marion Hossa), there are a dozen others that go where the money is. I really believe Burnett when he says he would like to stay with Toronto. He likes the city, the manager, the pitching coach and the other starters. But the Toronto offer could be as much as $30 million less than the highest bidder. So the odds of him returning to the Jays are about as good as John McCain winning on a recount.

The real dilemma for the Blue Jays is that they have no real strategy for building a winner. There are pretty much only two successful models. Spend, spend, spend like the Red Sox, Yankees, Mets, White Sox and Tigers. Or tank for several years in order to collect cheap prospect like the Rays and Twins. The Blue Jays are middle of the pack spenders which rarely produce winners. Now the Phillies’ payroll is identical to the Blue Jay payroll but the Phillies don’t play in the AL East. If they did, they wouldn’t have made the playoffs let alone win the World Series.

Getting to back to the Jay’s pitching staff. Paul Beaston claims they are not out of the running for Burnett and have a yet to be revealed strategy. It should be noted that the Blue Jays never made Burnett an offer although they had exclusive negotiating rights up until the time that A.J. opted out of his contact. It’s well documented that without Burnett, Marcum and McGowan (at least at the start of season) the best rotation in 2008 will look very ordinary in 2009. Certainly the AL East opponents will be relieved. Fortunately the Jays have some options including other free agents, trades, some young prospects and their deep bullpen. However, instead of just having to bolster their offense, the Jays also have to find some pitching which puts them in the same boat as most major league teams – with no shot at the playoffs.

McCain gets a call from Joe

"Hi John, this is Joe. Hope I didn't catch you at a bad time. I wanted to let you know how sorry I was about, uh, you know. You were the better man, you know. You deserved to win."

"Well, thank you Joe. But the blame really is my own. I guess that I should have followed my gut. I just know that we could have pulled it off if I had ignored my advisors and selected you as my vice president."

"Aw, that's nice of you to say, John, but there's no use in crying over spilt milk. Besides, you hadn't even met me when you picked Governor Palin."

"What? You're not Senator Lieberman, are you? This is one of those radio crank calls, isn't it? How did you get my cell number? You just tell me where you are and I'm going to come down there and rip your balls off."

"Whoa boy, whoa! Feeling pretty feisty this morning, aren't you? This isn't Joe Lieberman, this is Joe Wurzelbacher. You gave me your number three weeks ago."

"Joe whothefuck?"

"Joe Wurzelbacher. You said I was your new best friend, and that you were going to take me back to Washington with you. I was just calling to see..."

"The fucking plumber?"

"Well yeah, if you want to put it like that. I was just reading that the lame duck sessions start in a couple of weeks and..."

"Joe the fucking plumber."

"Yeah, you said that, okay? Listen, this is obviously a bad time. I'll call you back when...".

"You call me back, my friend, and I will have you killed. Capiche?"

"You're coming across with a real bad attitude, John McCain. I'm beginning to think you're kind of a sore loser. I'm going to call up Governor Palin and see what's shaking in Wasilla."

from The Aritocrats

Obama seeks Jewish chief of staff

The media is reporting that Barack Obama has asked Congressman Rahm Emanuel to be his chief of staff. Emanuel would have to sacrifice his own promising political career, and move his 3 young kids, but he is expected to accept. This assuages some fears about how Obama's ties to radical Muslims would affect American policy towards Israel. Many conservative bloggers have already suggested that Israel is sunk with Obama in the White House.

Emanuel is not one of those "in name only" Jews. He went to a conservative Jewish Day School and he and his wife (she converted) send their kids to the same one. Emanuel is the son of a Jerusalem-born doctor who worked for the Israeli underground before the nation's creation following World War II. The congressman belongs to an orthodox congregation in Chicago and worked as a volunteer in Israel during the first Gulf War.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Hockey's dark secrets revealed

David Frost, whose trial on sexual exploitation charges concluded in Napanee yesterday, may not be convicted, but we ought to be very worried about the how our junior hockey players live and play and study.

The case is an unusual adventure in criminal justice. Mr. Frost, who coached the Quinte Hawks junior hockey team in 1996-97, is accused of sexual exploitation of two of his hockey players (they can't be named). Exploitation means that there were consensual sexual contacts (no assaults or rape), but that Mr. Frost abused his position of authority and trust as a coach to take advantage of the boys.

The boys deny any sexual contact with Mr. Frost ever. In fact the Crown did not call the two alleged victims to testify; they were called by the defence to exonerate Mr. Frost. The Crown's case relies on two other witnesses of the sexual acts -- witnesses who also happen to be participants, and perhaps victims, though they insist everything was consensual. These are the then-girlfriends of the players, who last week testified to participating in group sex with their boyfriends, other players and Mr. Frost himself. In closing arguments yesterday, the Crown prosecutor said it was a "he said, she said" case with a twist -- the she in question is not a victim, and the alleged victims deny that the acts in question never took place.

The defence indicated in summation that we shouldn't criminalize sexual behaviour that all parties agree to, even if it revolts us otherwise. Group sex is just part of the junior hockey culture.

The Crown has assembled a very thin case against a very creepy defendant. It's easy to sympathize with the desire to hold him responsible for permitting a culture of promiscuity and exploitation that, even though consensual, was grossly immoral. If Mr. Frost participated in all this, he is criminally guilty. If he did not, but allowed all this to take place, he is not, to put it mildly, a man who should be coaching boys away from home.

The trial has lifted a corner of the rug under which many seamy aspects of junior hockey are swept. After this trial, it is legitimate to ask whether our junior hockey system needs reform.

Front pages from around the world

GPS directs driver into lake

A man in Poland followed his GPS' directions so faithfully he drove his Mercedes minivan into a lake.

According to reports, the man's GPS device has not been updated in a while, and was showing the man-made lake as a usable road - which it once had been.

This was not deliberate. The man was simply trying to get from Point A to Point B. But instead of relying upon his eyes, the man placed absolute faith in the disembodied voice emanating from his dashboard navigation system.

Piotr Smolen, a police spokesman in Glubczyce, Poland, told GPS Daily that the driver was not under the influence of alcohol. We almost wish he was, but fortunately, he and his two passengers escaped the incident unharmed, just soggy.

As the Star reports, "When rescuers arrived, the three were clinging to the roof of the minivan, which was nearly submerged. No word if the GPS was still gurgling directions: 'Climb Out Window Now. Swim To Safety In Two Seconds. Trudge Left Onto Dry Land In Three Metres. You Have Not Arrived.'"

Yes we can


Toronto threatens Tim Hortons' roll up the rim promotion

Toronto says it will ban coffee shops and restaurants from selling java in paper cups with plastic lids by the end of 2009, because recyclers don't want mixed paper and plastic. The city wants shops and restaurants that sell hot drinks to give customers a 20-cent discount if they bring their own mug. Under the city's rules, any mixed-material container – such as a paper cup and a plastic lid – is nonrecyclable. But a polystyrene foam cup with a plastic lid is considered recyclable, because it's all petrochemical. Biodegradable plastic bags, on the other hand, will also be banned, because recyclers don't want them.

Tim Hortons says the company will "absolutely not" redesign its cups to suit Toronto and says plastic lids are the only leak-proof products on the market.

I just don't know how you can roll up the rim of a styrofoam cup.

Sex at Bill games frowned upon

Hey Bill fans in Toronto. Just be forewarned. When the Bills play the Dolphins at the Rogers Centre next month, the Bills don't like people having sex during the games. They want your full attention.

You see at last Sunday's game at Ralph Wilson Stadium, security guards were checking out a commotion in a ladies’ restroom across from Section 336.

They found a woman was having sex with her boyfriend in a bathroom stall. The couple was arrested.

In November 1998, a couple was charged with public lewdness after being caught having sex in the upper-level stands during a Bills game.

So keep it in your pants at Bills games.

Why Obama won

Barack Obama’s victory was partly the result of a very well run campaign. Let’s face it, if you can beat the Clinton fundraising and campaign machine, you must be doing something right. But Obama was also fortunate to be in the right place at the right time. His message of change wouldn’t have fallen on deaf ears in 2004 but this is 2008.

In 2004 America was involved in a reckless war but that wasn’t enough to motivate voters to make a change in the White House although they may have had some misgivings. However, the current financial crisis is much closer to home for factory workers, salespeople, and homeowners.

The current financial situation is much closer to conditions in the 1930 than the savings and loans collapse in the 1980s. Both involved government intervention to stabilize the financial sector. The New Deal introduced by the Democrats in 1933 was the result of business-friendly Republican president which created an environment of greed, incompetence and excessive optimism. The New Deal brought about the Banking Act and the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation and forced banks to submit to regulation. That was followed by the Securities and Exchange Act which created a body to regulate stock exchanges. These changes for the most part protected consumers for the last 75 years.

The recent subprime mess has exposed sectors that are either unregulated or lightly regulated. For example, subprime lenders are not part of the FDIC system and investment banks are not part of the Federal Reserve. This financial mess provided the opportunity for the Democrats to take the White House because traditionally they have been viewed as being more willing and able to create new regulatory structures. As the Democrat's nominee, Barack Obama turned out to be the big winner.

A stunning win

For the past year many people told me that America would never vote a black man into the White House. I was still hearing the same thing in the dying days of the campaign despite the polls suggesting that Barack Obama had a comfortable lead. America perhaps has finally moved beyond the civil rights battles that dominated 19th and 20th century America. He may turn out to be too Liberal, too inexperienced or too arrogant but he won't fail because he is black.

Right now Martin Luther King is looking down on us with the biggest smile. His dream has come true.

What the world thinks

....not that it matters.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Get out and vote America


The 3 sexiest Jessica Biel film moments

Funny how she is wet in all three films. Jessica should be required wet clothes for the rest of her life. By the way, never heard of these movies either.

#3 - I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry

#2 - Stealth

#1 - Summer Catch

Is it time for Justin Trudeau

I ran a poll on this site on favourite Liberal leadership candidates and the person with the most support was Justin Trudeau. My results duplicate similar polls on the Liberal leadership potentials.

Over the weekend Justin Trudeau turned 36. Two weeks ago, he was elected to the House of Commons for the first time. He has no political experience but many people are ready to follow him. A very strange phenomenon.

Maybe it's because after the disastrous election two weeks ago Trudeau's youth and inexperience with the political culture in Ottawa is an asset to him, not a detriment. Perhaps people are thinking that since sooner or later Trudeau will be leader, than why not sooner.

But will impatient Liberals really allow him to learn on the job? An interesting thought but I suspect Trudeau will continue to insist that he is not ready. The next leadership race beyond the one in the spring of 2009 won't be that long.

Lulu Kennedy-Cairns is 60 today

I always loved the movie To Sir With Love and Lulu's theme song.