Gumdrops
Facts, Stats, and Sass
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Tuesday, April 9


CANADA'S CURIOUS $265 MILLION TELEFONICA - BLACKBERRY LOAN
In light of this week's fooferaw over accusations regarding RBC's said-use of temporary foreign workers in Canada, now feverish head-scratching in official circles after yesterday's surprise announcement that Export Development Canada has loaned Spain's mega-tech company Telefonica $265 million to buy new Blackberry phones.

According to an EDC minion, the "financing is really about making the transactions between BlackBerry and Telefonica easier, helping to enhance and broaden the relationship between these two major global players".

Yet the financing is made curious in light of Blackberry's disclosure that it has $2.9 Billion cash in the bank, clearly enough to finance such a loan to its deep-pocketed spanish client. Indeed, Telefonica reports it has over 5.7 billion euros in cash reserves (US $7.5 Billion).

So, two companies sitting on a combined $10 billion cash, yet needing hundreds of millions of Canadian tax dollars via EDC to swing a deal to buy smartphones made in Canada Mexico ?

Perhaps EDC can shed light on how this benefits Canadians. Developing ..

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Friday, December 7


EUROFIGHTER TYPHOON THE LOGICAL F-35 ALTERNATIVE
EXCLUSIVE: With Boeing's Super Hornet, Dassault's Rafale, and Saab's Gripen all scrambling for attention as lesser mortals, Bourque has learned from key insiders that the sexy ultra-modern Eurofighter Typhoon, much-touted by UK PM David Cameron, is seen as the perfect fit for Canadian needs going forward once Canada's existing F-18s begin their phase-out in 2020.

Indeed, the Typhoon seems to be everything Lockheed's F-35 isn't: a twin-engine, canard-delta wing, multirole fighter capable of performing the most demanding tasks, whether combat or peacekeeping, foreign or domestic.

Better still, the Eurofighter meets the highest level of requirement, ie, fitting in with Nato allies, since the Typhoon is now currently in use by a growing cavalcade of clients including the UK, Germany, Italy, Austria, and Spain, among many others.

A final decision is likely within 24 months at the latest with significant changes expected imminently within both the federal bureaucracy and at the ministerial level pertaining to needs-assessment, tendering, oversight, and decision-making.

POSTCRIPT: It remains unclear at this time if Lockheed will seek a full refund of its massive lobbying expenses paid to myriad Ottawa brainiacs and the significant advertising budgets dissipated with sundry publications, given what even casually appears to be a dismally catastrophic result produced to date by the, er, investments. But what the hell, the lunches at Hy's were tasty and, hey, those display ads sure looked cool on the iPad, eh.

Developing.

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Sunday, September 23


Ottawa comms shop linked to federal departments and F-35's Lockheed
Thornley Fallis: 'There's a fine line between a buzz-worthy publicity stunt and crossing to the darker side of ethical communications. Sure, you want to be creative and original in order to draw attention to your news, but you should never overtly mislead.' .. CTV-W5: 'A clear pattern .. everybody from the F-35 manufacturer to government officials who would buy the aircraft on Canada's behalf, saying "no" to interviews. But something else Lockheed Martin, DND, Public Works, & Industry Canada all shared in common: they have, at different times since 2007, been clients of the same Ottawa PR firm that told W5 "no" on Lockheed's behalf. Thornley Fallis. A review of DND, Public Works and Industry Canada contracts indicate that Thornley Fallis has earned a little over $700,000 in 15 contracts from these three agencies since 2007 (including a $246,100 contract with DND).' Postcript: It remains unclear how the F-35 file has devolved into the PR nightmare it has become, given the pricey PR advice offered up over many years by Joe Thornley's shop, conveniently located 'just six floors below the federal government's Privy Council Office on Metcalfe St.', as W5 noted. Curiously, Joe's website contains no refund policy should client files go hopelessly askew. Developing ..

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Sunday, August 26


GROWING INTEREST IN ROD ZIMMER MARRIAGE
69 y/o hound dog Senator & 23 y/o wife were en route to bury his mom's ashes
With the happy couple's first wedding anniversary tomorrow, it remains unclear if Rod Zimmer has spent quality time at Nygard Cay, the Bahamian getaway owned by Manitoban hedonist Peter Nygard.

The fun spot boasts that 'legendary musicians, actors, and politicians have sought out to stay' there, although the Nygard corporate website shows Rod & Peter buddy-buddy with a couple of hotties who look 1/3 their age, time and location unknown.

Meanwhile ..

a) Zimmer's Parliamentary bio lists a cornucopia of international parliamentary association memberships - a dozen in total - suggesting junket opportunities galore to cool destinations like Cuba, Morocco, Ireland, Italy, USA, even Russia. It also notes that he 'throws fundraising events, example, an annual Golf Tournament in Manitoba, for the Young Liberals of Canada. The Young Liberals help, and participate', it reads ..

b) While his position on gun control is being questioned, his hard work in the august chamber of sober second thought is being lauded ..

And c), now former Prime Minister Chief of Staff Norman Spector wonders about the status of Zimmer's senate pension plan.

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Tuesday, July 3


Erin O'Toole to succeed Bev Oda ?
Bourque has learned that Heenan Blaikie lawyer and longtime Conservative Erin O'Toole is being widely tipped to run for Bev Oda's soon-to-be vacated seat.

Word from the riding is the phones are ringing with support and pressure is building for him to run.

Last month, O'Toole participated in the Governor General's Canadian Leadership Conference. In 2009, he was nominated as one of Tomorrow's Leaders at the Canadian General Counsel Awards.

Prior to a career in law, he served as an officer in the Canadian Forces. He flew as a tactical navigator on the Sea King helicopter and sailed with the Canadian Navy.

O'Toole is well-liked and has deep Tory roots in the area. His father John is a provincial MPP, first elected Durham MPP in 1995, currently serving as Deputy Whip and Accountability Critic in Tim Hudak's Conservative shadow cabinet.

Developing.

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Tuesday, May 22

Project Tibet Society, Important Ottawa Information Meeting May 22nd

At the request of His Holiness the Dalai Lama, the Canadian government has committed to welcoming exiled Tibetan families to Canada over the next five years. This project was introduced at the Dalai Lama's public talk on April 28 in Ottawa.

As part of the Tibetan Resettlement Project, a local group is planning to bring some of these families to live in the Ottawa region.

We will be holding a fr ee information session about the resettlement project in the Auditorium of the Main Branch of the Ottawa Public Library at 7pm on May 22, 2012. Everyone is welcome.

If you would like to learn how to become a sponsor, a donor, a volunteer, or if you are simply interested in this project, please plan to attend this free information session.

At the meeting we hope to have some people come forward and offer to form and lead a sponsorship group as well as have people identify themselves as wanting to join a group being formed.

Contact Norman Steinberg for more information

***

Wednesday, April 4

Exclusive: Bourque insiders reported late yesterday afternoon that Prime Minister Stephen Harper may soon shuffle his Cabinet. It remains unclear at this time if the move will be a major re-jig involving several high-profile political figures or if it will be a more modest housecleaning to address certain known deficiencies.

Cabinet ministers said to be targeted include embattled Defense Minister Peter MacKay and his talking-points-babbling sidekick Associate-Defence Minister Julian Fantino, hapless ethics-challenged Industry Minister Christian Paradis, and the aging Public Safety Minister Vic Toews, currently suffering from a stressful portfolio that sent him to hospital earlier this week.

MacKay may well be on his way out of Cabinet, Fantino may be going to Public Safety, Toews may defibrillate at Industry, and Paradis may be demoted to a 'Minister-without-portfolio' status for the time being.

Should the shuffle be of a larger nature, names being whispered for promotion and re-jig include the rehabilitated Maxime 'Mad Max' Bernier (currently Minister of State for Small Business), the PM's Parliamentary Secretary Dean Del Mastro (said to have impressed many both in the House and in media settings), and affable journeyman 'don't-rock-the-dory' Fisheries Minister Keith Ashfield, of all people, possibly to replace the by-most-accounts disappointing Indian Affairs Minister John Duncan, who might find himself elevated to the Senate in November when former PC Party president and poultry poohbah Gerry St. Germain is forced to retire, assuming the slot doesn't go to Ken Boessenkool, a close pal of Harper's who is currently trench-warfaring it with Christy Clark in an increasingly hostile BC.

It is thought that the blood-letting will both address growing Conservative caucus discontent at its frontbench performance, while mitigating Opposition outrage at Ministerial actions (or lack thereof), which have dominated headlines in recent weeks.

The Prime Minister is also poised to fill a handful of other Senate vacancies in the coming months and at that time may replace Mulroney-era Senate leader Marjorie LeBreton with Doug Finley, which would not only bring the amiable one-malt kilt-man into Cabinet, but also create the first husband-wife Cabinet tandem in the history of Canada. Raise a wee dram of 25-year-old GlenDronach to that !

Developing ..

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Tuesday, March 20

The State of the F-35 Address
Ladies and Gentlemen of Parliament, Twittering representatives of the nation's media, Fellow taxpayers and assorted members of the great unwashed ..

Let me begin, it's another barrage of bad news for the Joint Strike Fighter ..

Development of the critical mission systems that give the JSF its core combat capabilities remains behind schedule and risky . .

Only 4 percent of the mission system requirements for full capability has been verified ..

The F-35's 24 million lines of code are "as complicated as anything on earth", and it'll take all of them working as intended before the F-35 can perform as advertised ..

Testing of a fully integrated JSF aircraft is now expected in 2015 at the earliest ..

Harrumph, er, that aside, can I interest anyone in an incredible XBox simulation of the F-35's awsome '5th Generation' capabilities ? No ? What about a peek at our amazing iPhone App ? No ? Well, did you at least see our really nifty display ad in the Hill Times ?

Aww, c'mon, give us a break !!

***

Wednesday, March 14

Dassault Rafale or Eurofighter Typhoon ?
Lockheed's F-35 is today teetering at the brink thanks to soaring costs, a growing litany of delays, and absolutely inept marketing relying on stale display ads, in-house propaganda websites, and the mutterings of on-call consultants relying on theoretical buzzwords like 'fifth generation'. Now, word that top military minds at DND HQ have been unleashed to determine potential alternatives with a view to bringing one on-stream in time to replace an aging fleet of CF-18s. Bourque has learned that two options have popped to the top of DND's wish list, the Dassault Rafale and the Eurofighter Typhoon, both incredibly advanced and lethal with twin-engined rockets that dovetail into Prime Minister Stephen Harper's desire to impose Canadian sovereignty on the Arctic frontier. It is understood that French President Nicolas Sarkozy has been touting the Rafale's 'semi-stealth' capabilities and 'omnirole' design that also makes it well-suited in allowing Canada to maintain its UN and NATO responsabilities. The Rafale recently won a major order from India and is said to be close to signing up both Brazil and the UAE .. Meanwhile, the Opposition is accusing the government of misleading Canadians on the F-35 .. A ruminant in the Toronto Star is wondering if Harper is admitting he was wrong .. And when it comes to our exorbitantly priced fighter jet replacement program, is "trust us" sufficient proof of cost/benefit regardless how much we 'support the troops' ?

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Saturday, October 1

5 years already: Peter Naglik remembered ..
"just a fundamentally decent human being" - Tim Powers

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Thursday, September 22

COLD WAR WARRIOR

Ken Castle, one of the last of the cold war warriors who flew fighter jets in Europe for the RCAF succumbed to lung and liver cancer at 2.30 a.m. Tuesday morning.

He is the only known pilot to have punched out of jet interceptors while flying at low level near Mach 1.

His first brush with death was over Germany. His craft lost all power. It had no glide capability and began to drop like a stone. Ken had no alternative but to eject.

His second ejection came after a large bird collided with the Perspex on Ken’s fighter and narrowly missed his head when it entered the cockpit. Again, he had no alternative.

Ken was a very private person and avoided any publicity over his narrow escapes with only minor injuries. When writer, Pat MacAdam, approached Ken to say he wanted to include him in an article he was writing on members of the Caterpillar Club, Ken declined politely.

The only vestige of his two ejections is a shadow box on the wall of his basement rec room. It contains the metal stirrup a flyer pulls to blow off the canopy and blast the pilot into space and safety.

Members of the Caterpillar Club were awarded tiny gold caterpillars with ruby eyes, which were won on lapels. A caterpillar was chosen because of its association with the silk of parachutes.

They were not awarded by the military but by the company that made parachutes.

A flyer who punched out over water was eligible to belong to the club that wore a dolphin rather than a caterpillar.

Without fail, Ken was a volunteer at the air museum every Wednesday. No task was too trivial. Much of the grunt work left little for the mind – filing and classifying. He also donated his time to area schools for reading sessions with students.

A widower, he married Helen Lane 25 years ago and brought one daughter to the marriage. Helen brought seven grandchildren and Ken spoiled them as if they were his own. The children called him Grandpa Ken.

Visitation will take place at Kelly Funeral Home, Walkley Road, on Sunday, September 25 from 2-4 and 7-9. A memorial service will be held at Holy Cross Church, Walkley Road, on Monday, September 26 at 10 a.m.

***

Wednesday, September 21


CLIFFORD OLSON NEAR DEATH
A Bourque exclusive - Special, by Michael Harris, 11 AM ET
Clifford Olson, Canada's most notorious serial killer, is dying of cancer and ia not expected to live out the month. The Commissioner of Corrections Canada passed the news along to well known advocates for victims of crime on a confidential basis.

Olson has been in and out of hospital for several months and looked ill and frail at his last parole hearing.

Olson received a life sentence for the murder of children in British Columbia. His killing spree ended with his arrest on August 12, 1981 His wife was subsequently paid $100,000 after Olson lead authorities to the graves of eleven children who were plied with drugs and alcohol before they were sexually assaulted and then murdered.

Olson remained in the news long after his conviction with each appearance at parole hearings making front pages across the country.Olson added to his infamy by taunting the parents of his victims. In one case, he sent a letter to the father and mother of one of his victims describing in detail what he had done to their child.

One of the most controversial episodes in the serial killer's stormy incarceration had to do with the sale of Clifford Olson memorabilia on an internet auction site.

In 2008, murderauction.com was forced to pull several of Olson's personal belongings from the site, including some of the killer's signed books. Then Public Safety minister Stockwell Day launched an investigation into how Olson memorabilia ended up for sale on a U.S. Website.

This week more Olson memorabilia showed up on murderauction.com including a book called "Sexual Homicide" signed by the serial killer and offered for $299.99.

Corrections Canada can prohibit or restrict publications produced by inmates if they contain offensive material or undermine the security of a federal prison.

According to prison psychiatrists, the self-styled "Beast of British Columbia" has never shown remorse for his sadistic crimes and even warned that he would kill again.

Olson was the last serial killer in Canada to apply for parole under the so-called Faint Hope Provision of the Criminal Code. That provision allowed convicted killers to apply for parole fifteen years into their sentence. It took the Parole Board 15 minutes to deny Olson's request. The law has since been amended to exclude multiple murderers like Olson.

While in prison, the 71 year-old Olson claimed that he murdered betweeb 80 to 200 people.

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Tuesday, September 6

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Monday, July 11


Flashback: B.C. emitting more greenhouse gases
What the devil is Clare Mochrie up to ? Curious that an expert on environmental and social impact assessment is now twisting arms and bending ears for the company His Nibs the 'King of Bling' ™ Jay Hill is lobbying for, which is said to produce 'the most greenhouse gas in British Columbia'.

Coincidentally, there was no mention of Clare's tie-in with Spectra in her company's roster of 'clients & partners' before she pulled the page from public consultation late today (since restored).

In unrelated news, a BC blogger points out that Spectra's largest BC political donation to date was a whopping $20,500 to Christy Clark, of all people just a few short weeks ago.

The mind boggles.

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Thursday, June 16


2,500 has signed on and we've ID'd 2 winners: @richdeschamps (lucky # 2,500) and @irobertdavis, someone else within the 2,500 followers !
$100 Bourque swag to both lucky followers !

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Tuesday, May 10


"As the Trotsky of the Conservative movement,
I don't have inside information anymore"

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Sunday, May 1

Abacus: CPC 37 % NDP 32 % LPC 18 % ...
Forum: CPC 36 % NDP 33 % LPC 19 % ...
Nanos: CPC 36.9 % NDP 31.6 % LPC 21.3 % BQ 5.2 % GP 3.7 %
Poll 42% see Harper minority ...

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Monday, April 18

Leger: CPC 38 % LPC 26 % NDP 22 %
AngusReid: CPC 36 % LPC 25 % NDP 25 % BQ 9 % Grn 5 %
Nanos: CPC 39 % LPC 28.3 % NDP 18.4 % BQ 9.6% GRN 3.6%

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Saturday, April 9

Nanos: Con 40.5% Lib 31.7% Ndp 13.2% Bq 9.2% Grn 4%

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Friday, April 8

Nanos: Con 40.6% Lib 31.1% Ndp 14.9% Bq 8.7% Grn 3.4%

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Thursday, April 7

AngusReid: Con 38% Lib 27% Ndp 21%
Nanos: Con 39.6% Lib 30.4% Ndp 17.2% Bq 8.3% Grn 3.2%

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Wednesday, April 6

Nanos: Con 39.7% Lib 29.9% Ndp 17.4% Bq 8.3% Grn 3.8

Monday, April 4

Considered accurate plus or minus ... well, whatever ...
Decima: Con 35 % Lib 28 % Ndp 17 % ...
Leger: Con 37% Lib 26% Ndp 18% ...
Nanos: Con 42.8 % Lib 28.4 % Ndp 16.4 %

--

Harper seethes as internal sniping grows entering Campaign Week 2
Reports that second-guessing about election strategy proliferating inside the Tory bunker. Campaign chair Guy Giorno, much-unloved, finding difficulty gaining traction beyond Tory Kool-Aid guzzlers. Campaign boss Jenni Byrne, over her head, at wits end, waiting for axe to fall. Worst-case scenario, Harper blows a gasket in public.

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Sunday, April 3

this just in ...

TORONTO, ON -- COMPAS Inc. (known as COMPAS Research, est. 1987) would like to clarify that it is not associated with the election tool being promoted by CBC on-air and online.

Vote Compass is an online canvas of political issues designed to tell users how their political views align with the various political parties.

The label and graphics of the CBC's ÒVOTE COMPASSÓ are very similar to well-established trademarks of COMPAS Research. This has led to confusion.

ÒWe were reluctant to go public with this matter, but surveys are COMPASÕ business,Ó said Dr. Conrad Winn, founder of COMPAS Research. ÒWe do not object to the CBC attempting to use online tools to engage Canadians. We simply donÕt want to take credit or criticism for work we did not do.Ó

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Wednesday, March 30

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MARCH 30, 2011

STATEMENT BY NEW DEMOCRAT CAMPAIGN SPOKESPERSON

"Why is Stephen Harper so afraid to debate Jack Layton? Could it be that Jack Layton is more popular than Michael Ignatieff? Or is it because Jack Layton was the only leader to stand up to Stephen Harper in parliament?

"I can understand why Stephen Harper would chicken out. Mr. Layton just finished a successful Western tour, showing he is the only leader capable of taking on Stephen Harper and beating the Conservatives.

"But Jack Layton isn't going to let him off the hook that easily. Somebody has to take on Stephen Harper and that's not Mr. Ignatieff.

"Liberals supported Stephen Harper in over 100 confidence votes - rubber stamping Conservative budgets while getting nothing in return for Canadian families. Michael Ignatieff voted with Stephen Harper to extend the war Afghanistan and helped him pass the HST and raise the price on just about everything in British Columbia and Ontario.

"Anyone who suggests the best way to stand up to Stephen Harper is to vote for the Ignatieff Liberals is dead wrong."

-30-

Layton in the 2008 English Election Debate: http://www.ndp.ca/hhuNp

Kathleen Monk
New Democrat Campaign Spokesperson

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Tuesday, March 29

Abacus: Con 36% Lib 27% Ndp 20% Bq 9% Grn 8%
ForumResearch: Con 41% Lib 24% Ndp 19% Bq 10%
Decima: Con 38% Lib 24% Ndp 19% Bq 10%

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Monday, March 21

Decima (March 2011): Con 34% Lib 28% Ndp 17% Grn 9%
Decima (Election, 2008): Con 37% Lib 26% Ndp 18% Grn 7%

Tuesday, March 15

Ipsos: Con 40% Lib 27% Ndp 16% Bq 11%

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Monday, March 14

Leger: Con 36% Lib 23% Ndp 18% Bq 10% Grn 10% ...

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Thursday, March 10

AngusReid: Con 39% Lib 23% Ndp 17%

"A government of cheaters, cowards, and crazies ..."
Lib prez Alfred Apps blasts Harper Gov't

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Wednesday, March 2

Flaherty: Next federal budget Tuesday March 22nd
Ipsos: Con 43% Lib 27% Ndp 13% Bq 10% Grn 5%

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Thursday, February 24

AngusReid: Con 39% Lib 26% Ndp 18% ...

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Monday, February 21

Nanos: Con 39.7% Lib 26.6% Ndp 18.9% Bq 9.9% Grn 4.9%

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Monday, February 7

What was Jean LaPierre doing lunching @ Mas des Oliviers, Montreal's bastion of Conservative noshing, today ?

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Thursday, February 3

Ipsos: Con 34% Lib 29% Ndp 16% Bq 11% Grn 10% ...

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Monday, January 24

Peladeau wants to name Quebec NHL arena ?
Insider rumours swirling that Quebecor supremo PK Peladeau may be demanding of government in Ottawa and Quebec City that the new NHL arena be named the 'Forum Rene Levesque' in honour of the patron saint of the Parti Quebecois, a tip of the hat to PK's father and Quebecor founder Pierre Peladeau, a giant of the so-called 'Quebec, Inc.' of years past, a repository of then (and still) powerful Quebec-based industrialists and entrepreneurs.

Peladeau Sr was said to be a huge fan of the former Quebec Premier, the supposed reason for Jr's insistence on naming rights.

Quebec Premier Jean Charest, desperate for support from any quarter, is said to be onside.

It is also said that certain Quebec Tories are pressuring Prime Minister Stephen Harper to accept the condition as a means to undermine Bloq Quebecois support and to appease soft-nationalists who might be inclined to vote Conservative if given sufficient reason to do so.

An NHL arena named after Levesque, with international media exposure to a giant of Quebec sovereignty, might just fit the bill. Developing.

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Wednesday, January 12

Ipsos: Con 34% Lib 28% Ndp 17%

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Friday, Nov 19


Insiders: We want the Rafale
Is Dassault's Rafale Canada's preferred next-gen fighter jet ? That's according to key military insiders who reveal that had the over-priced and much-delayed single-engine'd F-35 not been sole-sourced, it is likely Canada would have opted for the much more versatile and price-friendly French alternative, an option that would have kept Canada's new fleet within the Nato family, and one that would have brought vast 'net benefits' to the Canadian economy. The French twin-engined delta-wing agile multi-role jet fighter aircraft is designed and built by Dassault Aviation. According to ex-Red Arrows pilot Peter Collins, "it is simply the best and most complete combat aircraft that I have ever flown. Its operational deployments speak for themselves. If I had to go into combat, on any mission, against anyone, I would, without question, choose the Rafale". Developing.

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Thursday, November 11


No poppy without permission

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Wednesday, November 10

Nanos: Con 37.1% Lib 31.6% Ndp 15.4% Bq 10.8% Grn 5.2% ...

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Friday, November 5

H@H: Ruby Dhalla to jump to Harper Tories ?
Oh Ru-u-by, don't take yur luv to town ...

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Sunday, October 31


Belinda for Lib Prez latest:
The idea is aloft as Ms Stronach considers over next several weeks.
Frank McKenna: "She'd be terrific" ... Ernie Eves: "She can do it" ... A key insider: "She can help bigtime with fundraising ..."
Developing ...

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Wednesday, October 27

AngusReid: Con 37% Lib 26% NDP 19% BQ 10% Grn 6%

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Tuesday, October 26


Belinda next Liberal Party President ?
Well-placed source tells Bourque ex-MP/Cabmin Stronach may
seek to replace Alf Apps next Spring. Says Apps, "She would be terrific !"
Belinda, btw, to speak @ Canadian Club Nov 9

Tuesday, October 19

Decima: Con 32% Lib 30% Ndp 14% Grn 10% ...

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Thursday, September 30

CROP Quebec: Bq 32% Con 23% Lib 23% Ndp 18% ...

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Wednesday, Sept 29

AngusReid: Con 34% Lib26% Ndp 18% Grn 11% Bq 10%

***

Thursday, Sept 22


Trudeau: I believe in guns:
"We have a culture that has grown up with guns and that respects the need to go out into the winderness and shoot things ..."

--

Ipsos: Con 35% Lib 29% Ndp 12% Grn 12% Bq 11% ...

***

Tuesday, September 14

Ipsos: Con 34% Lib 31% Ndp 16% Bq 10% Grn 9% ...
Environics: Con 35% Lib 31% Ndp 16% Bq 9% Grn 7% ...

***

Monday, August 30


Read about Pierre's Nascar weekend here ...

***

Monday, June 15


Breaking: As much as 85% summit contracts granted untendered ?
Senior Tories whisper this could be their Adscam. Developing ...

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Monday, June 7


Bourque's best-ever Nascar finish

***

Wednesday, May 12

Godfrey & Co.
With the Canadian news'paper' industry in a fatal downward spiral (let's face it, how many felled trees will it take before the newspaper people realize they are 'dead men walking'), Paul Godfrey must pin his hopes, and those of his investors, on whatever digital by-products emanate from the news-making industry.

Conjure online and wireless in all its varied permutations, both nascent and entrenched.

That's no small order for a guy in his 70's who spent his formative young-adulthood watching black-and-white TV and dancing to 'Let's Go To The Hop' ... a guy who holds to news in its print form the way Brian Tobin held on to the Atlantic fishery's last remaining turbots.

That aside, Godfrey is said to have vision and is likely to seek out inspired minds outside Canwest's current amalgam of lunkers to breathe life back into Canada.Com and the rest of his moribund online brands.

One key name said to be on Godfrey's 'get' list is Arturo Duran, former AOL and Impremedia Digital supremo, who was responsible for Canwest's earliest digital glories before fate and the stiffling powers of bloated corporate debt interceded.

The fate of a billion dollar investment and thousands of jobs may well rest in his hands.

***

Thursday, May 6

Mexico President Calderon to give speech in House of Commons May 27

Nanos: Con 37.2% Lib 33.2% Ndp 16% Grn 4% ...

Former Clerk of the Privy Council Glenn Shortliffe dead @ 72
Longtime Ottawa broadcasting powerhouse Terry Kielty dead

***

Wednesday, April 28

Notice: Because of ongoing controversy, Bourque will no longer carry Ekos Research polling results. However, this site will continue to lead the nation by providing polling results from the widest variety of reputable sources, including Pollara, Nanos, Ipsos, Angus, Leger, Crop, and Bourque Online polls.

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Monday, April 26

Decima: Con 29% Lib 27% Ndp 20% ...

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Saturday, April 24

Ipsos: Con 35% Lib 29% Ndp 16% ...

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Thursday, April 22

Ekos: Con 31% Lib 27.1% Ndp 16.3% Grn 12.6% Bq 9.5% ...

***

Tuesday, April 20

Ndp MP Pat Martin's shocking statement on CFRA:
Jaffer crony Nazim Gillani 'a gangster'

(* Bourque: there is no proof Gillani is 'a gangster', despite Martin's claim)

***

Thursday, April 15

Ekos: Con 31.4% Lib 29% Ndp 16.4% Grn 11.1% Bq 8.8% ...

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Monday, April 12

Ipsos: Con 37% Lib 27% Ndp 15% Grn 10% ...

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Thursday, April 8

Ekos: Con 33.6% Lib 27.3% Ndp 15.9% Grn 11.7% Bq 9.6% ...

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Wednesday, April 7

Decima: Con 32% Lib 29% Ndp 17% Grn 11% ...
Listen to Pierre talk Afghanistan on Racetime Radio ...

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Thursday, April 1

Ekos: Con 32.2% Lib 27% Ndp 16% Grn 12.7 Bq 9% ...

Friday, March 19

Ipsos: Con 34% Lib 28% Ndp 18% Grn 10% ...

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Thursday, March 18

Ekos: Con 33.1% Lib 28.9% Ndp 15.7% Grn 10.8% Bq 9.2% ...

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Tuesday, March 16

Nanos: Con 34.7 % Lib 34.6 % Ndp 17.8 % Bq 7.7% Grn 5.2%

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Thursday, March 11

Ekos: Con 31.9% Lib 29.6% Ndp 16% Grn 11% Bq 9.1% ...

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Tuesday, March 9

Decima: Con 33% Lib 29% Ndp 16% ...

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Thursday, March 4

Ekos: Con 32.4% Lib 29.4% Ndp 15.2% Grn 10.5% Bq 9.4% ...

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Tuesday, March 2

Ipsos: Con 37% Lib 29% Ndp 16% Bq 9% Grn 7%
Decima: Con 31% Lib 31% Ndp 16% Grn 12% Bq 8%

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Thursday, February 25

Ekos: Con 33.4% Lib 30.3% Ndp 15.8% Grn 10.4% Bq 8.2% ...

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Thursday, February 18

Ekos: Con 31.2% Lib 29% Ndp 16.5% Grn 11.8% Bq 8.8% ...

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Tuesday, February 16

Angus Reid: Con 34% Lib 30% Ndp 18% Bq 9% Grn 8%

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Saturday, February 13

Environics: Lib 37% ... Con 33% ... Ndp 13% ... Grn 9% ...

***

Thursday, February 11

Ekos: Con 31% Lib 29% Ndp 15.5% Grn 11.3% Bq 10.3% ...

***

Monday, February 8

Nanos: Con 35.6% Lib 33.9% Ndp 16.4% Grn 5.6%

***

Thursday, February 4

Ekos: Lib 31.9% Con 31% Ndp 15.4% Grn 10.9% Bq 8.4% ...

***

Monday, February 1


Dead heat: Lib 32% Con 32% ... 'a seismic political shift is under way '

***

Thursday, January 29

AngusReid: Con 33% Lib 29% Ndp 19% Bq 10% Grn 7% ...
Ekos: Lib 31.6% Con 31.1% Ndp 14.6% Grn 11% Bq 9.1% ...
Decima: Con 32% Lib 31% Ndp 15% Grn 10% Bq 10% ...

***

Monday, January 25

Ipsos: Con 34% Lib 31% Ndp 17% Bq 9% Grn 8% ...

***

Thursday, January 21

Ekos: Con 31.5% Lib 30.9% Ndp 14.9% Grn 11.5% Bq 9.1% ...

***

CONSORTIUM TO BID FOR THREE CANWEST DAILIES

Toronto, Jan. 18, 2010 -- The Hon. Jerry S. Grafstein, Q.C., Raymond Heard and Beryl Wajsman, all of whom have played significant roles in the Canadian media, announced today that they are leading a consortium of local investors to acquire The Montreal Gazette, The Ottawa Citizen and The National Post.

The group is in the process of filing a bid to buy the three dailies from the CanWest chain. The partners hope to be able to begin due diligence on the operating data in the next few weeks. The consortium partners have received strong financial commitments. Additional participants in the consortium will be announced.

"Our partnership represents a cross spectrum of engaged Canadians committed to a vigorous, independent media voice for the communities that each newspaper serves. We are encouraged by the positive response we have received from investors," the three consortium partners said. "We are firm in our view that there remains a bright future for newspapers supported by creative web platforms."

The consortium believes newspapers must emphasize local involvement; timely, informative, well- written stories and grassroots journalism reflecting the priorities of Canada's diverse communities. Each newspaper has a loyal and interested readership which the consortium is confident can be broadened and deepened.

In a career in public affairs, the law and media, Grafstein was a founder of CITY-TV in Toronto and other electronic and print enterprises in Canada, the U.S., Europe and Latin America.

Heard, a media consultant with major corporate clients, was White House correspondent and Managing Editor of the Montreal Star, Editor of the London Observer News Service, and head of Global News.

Beryl Wajsman, is Editor of Quebec's largest English-language weekly, publisher of the bilingual journal of political commentary, The Metropolitain, and was the producer and host of a Montreal radio news magazine program.

For more information, please contact:

Jerry Grafstein: 416-369-4108; jgrafstein@mindengross.com

Ray Heard: 416-964-7954; 416-710-7954; rheard@rogers.com

Beryl Wajsman: 514-941-4840; wajsman@themetropolitain.ca

***

Thursday, January 14

Decima: Con 34% Libs 30% Ndp 16% Grn 9% ...
Ekos: Con 30.9% Lib 29.3% Ndp 15.3% Grn 11.9% ...
AngusReid: Con 34% Lib 28% Ndp 19% ...
StratCoun: Con 31% Lib 30% Ndp 18% ...

***

Sunday, January 10

AngusReid: Con 36% Lib 29% Ndp 17% ...

***

Thursday, January 7

Ekos: Con 33.1% Lib 27.8% Ndp 16% Grn 13.4% Bq 9.8%

***

Wednesday, Dec 30

Nanos: Con 39.5% Libs 30.2% Ndp 18.7% Green 4% ...

***

Friday, December 18

Ekos: Con 35.9% Lib 26.7% Ndp 17% Grn 11.2% Bq 9.2% ...

<***

Thursday December 17

Decima: Con 34% Lib 28% Ndp 14% Grn 13% ...

***

Monday, December 14

AngusReid: Con 36% Lib 29% Ndp 16% Bq 11% Grn 6% ...

***

Friday, November 27

Ekos: Con 36.9% Lib 27.1% Ndp 15.3% Grn 11.4% Bq 9.4% ...

***

Saturday, Nov 21

Ipsos: Con 37% Lib 24% Ndp 19% Grn 10% Bq 9%

***

Friday, Nov 20

AngusReid: Con 38 % Libs 23 % Ndp 17 % ...

***

Thursday, Nov 12

Ekos: Con 36.6% Lib 26.6% Ndp 16.8% Grn 11.2% Bq 8.8% ...

***

Thursday, November 5

Ekos: Con 37.4 % Lib 26.8 % Ndp 16.3 % Grn 10 % Bq 9.4% ...

***

Thursday, October 29

Ekos: Con 38.4% Lib 26.8% Ndp 16.7% Grn 9.9% Bq 8.2% ...
AngusReid: Con 40% Lib 26% Ndp 17% Bq 9% Grn 7%...

***

Tuesday, October 27

Environics: Ont PCs 37% Lib 32% Ndp 19% Grn 11% ...

--


Housakos to get the boot ?
Just when the Tories thought a majority was a done-deal, the storm clouds are gathering.

Bourque has learned that embattled Conservative Senator Leo Housakos, linked to key players in the dramatically escalating Quebec construction scandal, imbedded in the Senate until the year 2043 no less, and persona non grata at the post-Mario Dumont ADQ, may be turfed from the Conservative caucus because of lingering ethics issues that have elicited a barrage of questions in the House of Commons to the extent that the Quebec politico himself has called in the Senate ethics officer to probe potential derring-do and unknown nefarious deeds.

Senior Tory sources who've read the tea leaves and who spoke to Bourque on condition of anonymity assert "the situation is untenable".

Such is the breach of trust within the highest echelons of Team Harper, otherwise preoccupied with ravishing glances at their current poll numbers.

Said one keener who's shared a pizza with the PM while marveling at Don Cherry's resplendent blazer during a hockey broadcast, "Housakos is expendable as a Tory. He's kicking up a lot of dust in Quebec, the absolute last place we need to have a dust storm."

It remains unclear how, or if, Housakos will be dealt with by the PM's political handlers, his buddy Soudas runs interference and may have to be deleted too, but it is understood that the threat Housakos made to his detractor last week won him no favours.

The PM is said to remain unimpressed by his contingent of Quebec politicians.

As one top-shelf Tory put it, "Pierre, we are so high in the polls these days, the only place we can go is down. And the only way we can go down is if we screw up. That's why Housakos needs to be nipped in the bud."

Meanwhile, Paul Desmarais' newspaper La Presse is now reporting that Housakos crony Giulio Maturi is suddenly out as senior Harper organizer in the Montreal area and is "no longer employed by the Conservative Party", according to a spokesperson for Public Works Minister Christian Paradis, Harper's Quebec lieutenant.

Developing.

--

Environics: Con 38% Lib 26% Ndp 16% Grn 10% Bq 8% ...

***

Thursday, October 23

Ekos: Con 38.3% Lib 27.1% Ndp 14.5% Grn 11% Bq 9%
Nanos: Con 39.8% Lib 30% Ndp 16.6% Bq 8.9% Grn 4.6%

***

Monday, October 12

Ipsos: Con 39% Lib 29% Ndp 13% Bq 10% Grn 8% ...

***

Thursday, October 8

Ekos: Con 39.7% Lib 25.7% Ndp 15.2% Grn 9.7% Bq 9.7%

***

Monday, October 5

StratCoun: Con 41% Lib 28% Ndp 14% ...

***

Friday, October 1

AngusReid: Con 37% Lib 27% Ndp 17% Bq 11% Grn 6%

--

What's in a name, eh
Yes, we were first weeks ago to re-label Iggy as 'Iffy' ...
Now Bourque re-labels Denis Coderre as 'Joe Quebec' ...

***

Thursday, September 30

Ekos: Con 36% Lib 29.7% Ndp 13.9% Grn 10.5% Bq 9.8% ...

Monday, September 28

Leger: Con 36% Lib 30% Ndp 17% Grn 8% Bloc 8% ...

***

Saturday, September 26

AngusReid: Con 37% Lib 29% Ndp 16% Bq 9% Grn 8%
Next Toronto mayor ? Tory 31% Mercer 18% Rossi 15% Smitherman 13% Chow 8% etc ...

Friday, September 25

Ex-bigwig LaPierre blasts IggyLibs: Who's running the show in Quebec ??

***

Thursday, September 24

Lib Ex-MP blasts Iggy Libs
A top Quebec Lib who ran successfully for the Party in the '90's under Chretien has gone online to unleash a torrent of vitriol against the party's leadership incumbents.

"I am shocked and dismayed by how Martin C. was treated", admits the Lib, referring to former Justice Minister Martin Cauchon, "Regrettably long time loyalty and commitment to party and country no longer count for anything in face of selfish and crass personal political interests. No wonder less than 10% of Quebec francophone's support the federal Liberals."

Brutal.

***

Wednesday, September 23

H@H: Iggy's enchanted forest ...
Ekos: Con 37% Lib 29.9% Ndp 13.8% Grn 10.2% Bq 9.1% ...
Blogger: Bourque hitches his wagon to those who are on the up ...

--

It began in Outremont
BOURQUE EXCLUSIVE: And so it begins. In Outremont, of all places. The end of the beginning, the beginning of the end. For bookish Harvard Professor Michael Ignatieff's leadership of the once-proud, and united, Liberal Party. A tutelage foisted on the party's membership, seemingly unstoppable, certainly uncontested, increasingly regretted.

The brown envelopes have begun to circulate, the sniping is increasing, the knives are being sharpened.

"This is worse than Dion", confided one key ground-zero Liberal to this scribbler, "I am hearing attacks on him at dinners etc that are more than brutal."

In Montreal, and elsewhere, fingers are being pointed at the "control freaks and bullies" who keep Ignatieff leashed and who refuse the effervescence of renewal in a blind headlong lust for power.

One example, according to a Toronto Lib who bleeds red, "the Ontario caucus did not want an early election, but Ignatieff announced Harper's time was up before he even consulted us. Pierre, the Ontario caucus IS the Liberal Party", argued our source.

To some, the Iggy era will be remembered as an amiable three hour cruise, yes, a three hour cruise gone wrong. To others, it will be but a footnote in the storied history of a once (and future) great political dynasty of political giants such as Laurier, King, Pearson, Trudeau, and Chretien.

Developing ...

Friday, September 18


Gallant for Guergis ?
A top PMO/Langevin Block insider speaking on deep background over a tumbler of 21-year-old single malt tells Bourque that a serious look at Cabinet alternatives is being considered should 'Steve' decide to replace the otherwise preoccupied junior Cabinet Minister Helena Guergis.

"Her hubby's become an unwanted issue and we need distance", suggests our close-to-the-epi-centre-of-Langevin-power source, who points surprisingly to longtime MP Cheryl Gallant as the probable replacement.

"It's pretty simple", suggests our source, "Cheryl is rural, she's female, she's blonde, and she's Ontarian".

Such is the play of power in Ottawa these days.

***

Thursday, September 17

Ekos: Con 35.1% Lib 29.9% Ndp 16.5% Bq 9.6% Grn 9% ...

***

Wednesday, September 16

AngusReid: Con 36% Lib 29% NDP 17% Bq 10% Grn 7% ...

***

Tuesday, September 15

Decima: Con 34% Lib 30% Ndp 15% Grn 10% Bq 9% ...

***

Monday, September 14

Ipsos: Con 39% Lib 30% Ndp 12% Bq 9% Grn 8% ...

***

Thursday, September 10

Ekos: Con 34.2% Lib 30.8% Ndp 14.8% Grn 10.1% Bq 10% ...

***

Wednesday, September 9

Decima: Con 34% Lib 31% Ndp 15% Grn 10% Bq 8% ...

***

Tuesday, September 8

StratCoun: Con 35% Lib 30% Ndp 14% Bq 12% Grn 9% ...

***

Thursday, September 3

AngusReid: Con 33% Lib 32% Ndp 19% Bq 9% Grn 7% ...
Ekos: Con 32.6% Lib 32.6% Ndp 16.5% Grn 9.9% Bq 8.3% ...

***

Aug 30


Bourque 7ieme @ Montreal ...
Bourque 7th in Montreal Nascar race ...
All prize winnings to Military Families Fund

***

Aug 27

Ekos: Con 32.6 % Lib 30.9 % Ndp 15.7 % Grn 11.3 % Bq 9.5 %

***

Monday, August 24

Decima: Lib 32% Con 31 Ndp 16 Grn 11% Bq 9% ...

***

Thursday, August 20

Ekos: Con 32.8% Lib 30.2% ...

***

Thursday, August 13

Ekos: Con 32.7% Lib 31% ...

***

Tuesday, August 11

Can Liz May's Greens take Saanich - Gulf Islands ?
A Bourque reader wades in ...

"Pierre, I'm knee-deep in federal politics in Saanich - Gulf Islands, the seat that Elizabeth May thinks she can parachute into.

Gary Lunn got re-elected in the last election after a very close race in a usually safe Tory seat. The reason was that the NDP candidate "dropped out" after the nominations deadline, and the Liberal, Briony Penn, had formed a coalition of environmentalists and other anti-Tory people.

This time, the Liberals are targeting the seat again. They've eyed this seat for years, and it's part of their BC strategy. There's no way Iggy will strike any kind of deal the same way Dion did in Central Nova last time around.

Also, the NDP will run a candidate. (For the past 40 years, the seat has gone PC/Reform/CA/Conservative in every election except 1988, when the NDP snatched it because of a PC/Reform split). If anyone ever has a chance of defeating us, it will be them. (It's a BC thing, I know it doesn't make sense.)

Anyways, we have amassed a lot of information on Ms May, which we will definitely utilize. I can't see the "progressives" coalescing around someone against same-sex marriage, just to mention one item.

People who vote Tory or Liberal are not about to switch to Elizabeth May. So despite the media's contention that we are a riding that is just itching to go Green, it's simply not true. The numbers don't add up for her.

Take care!"

***

Thursday, August 6

Ekos: Con 34.9% Lib 31.9% Ndp 13.8% Grn 10.8% Bq 8.6%...

***

Thursday, July 30

AngusReid: Lib 34% Con 33% Ndp 16% Bq 10% Grn 7%

***

Friday, July 24

Bourque talks Nascar with CHED's Dan Tencer

***

Saturday, July 18

AngusReid: Con 33% Lib 30% Ndp 18% Bq 11% Grn 6% ...

--

Thursday, July 16

Ekos: Con 34.1% Lib 32.4% Ndp 15.2% Grn 9.6% Bq 8.7% ...

--

Thursday, July 9

AngusReid: Con 36% Lib 30% Ndp 16% Bq 10% Grn 7%

--

Tuesday, July 7

StratCoun: Con 34% Lib 33% Ndp 15% ...

***

Thursday, July 2

Ekos: Lib 32.2% Con 31% Ndp 16.2% ...

***

Thursday, June 25


Angus Reid: Con 32% Lib 31% NDP 18% BQ 11% Grn. 7%
Ekos: Con 34.8% Lib 32.6% Ndp 14.3% Grn 9.3% Bq 9%

***

Friday, June 19


Don Newman, so long for now, you will be missed ...

***

Thursday, June 18

Ekos: Lib 33.7% Con 32.4% Ndp 16.3% Grn 9% Bq 8.7% ...

***

Thursday, June 11

Decima: Lib 35% Con 31% Ndp 15% Bq 9% Grn 8% ...
Ekos: Lib 35% Con 32.3% Ndp 15.1% Grn 10.4% Bq 9.2% ...

***

Monday, June 9

StratCoun: Lib 34% Con 30% Ndp 16% Grn 11% Bq 9% ...

***

Saturday, June 6

Nanos: Lib 37.2% Con 31.8% Ndp 15.7% Bq 8% Grn 7.4% ...
Ipsos: Lib 36% Con 33% Ndp 12% Bq 9% Grn 9% ...

***

Monday June 1

AngusReid: Lib 33% Con 31% Ndp 17% Bq 9% Grn 7% ...
Ekos: Lib 33.5% Con 32.3% ...

***

Monday, May 25

Shocker: Ed Greenspon out at G&M, replaced by John Stackhouse
Crawley: "a leap forward today with the reorganization"

***

Saturday, May 23


IGGY ON THE BEACH
When the going gets tough, the tough go to ... Bermuda !

A Hill news hound reports that as soon as shiny new Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff admonished his opponents for targeting him in an ad campaign pointing out he's spent the better part of the last 4 decades domiciled abroad, and just as soon as he beseeched his MPs to spend this past off-week consulting with constituents back in their ridings, now news that Michael and wife Zsuszanna (citizenship unknown) was spotted en route to Bermuda for some R&R.

Curiously, not a tweet about the secret getaway from the great man or from his most trusted adjunct.

***

Tuesday, May 12

Ctv Poll: Lib 35% Con 30% Ndp 16% Grn 11% Bq 9% ...

***

Wednesday, May 6


Bourque revs up Nascar season ...

***

Friday/Saturday May 1/2

Ipsos: Lib 36% Con 33% Ndp 13% Grn 8% ...
Nanos: Lib 36 Con 33 Ndp 15 Bq 9 Grn 7 ...

***

Thursday, April 30

Cancel the Mariachi Band !
Bourque has learned that a high-powered delegation of Mexican Parliamentarians, including Gustavo Enrique Madero Mu–oz, Speaker of the Senate, and CŽsar Duarte J‡quez, Speaker of the Chamber of Deputies of the United Mexican States, were due in Canada next week (May 6-9th) as part of an Interparliamentary Meeting of Canada-Mexico. The delegation was due to visit Ottawa, ON, and Saint John, NB. The trip has this afternoon been canceled.

***

Friday, April 24

AngusReid: Con 33% Lib 33% Ndp 15% Bq 10% Grn 6%

Nascar '09: Bourque back on the gas !

***

***

Thursday, April 23

Thank you for supporting this site ...
Your support greatly appreciated: $25 - $50 - $100 - $250 - $500 ... Other

POLL: IGGY TAX TALK TAKING TOLL

***

Wednesday, April 22

Decima: Lib 32% Con 29% Ndp 16% Grn 11% Bq 9% ...

***

Monday, April 20

As first reported exclusively here Sunday ... (& on Twitter too !):
CLINTON & BUSH IN CANADA

--

Poll: Who next Ont PC Leader ? Elliott 29% Hudak 23% Hillier 16% Klees 6% Other 18%

***

Sunday, April 19


BOURQUE EXCLUSIVE: CLINTON & BUSH IN CANADA
Bourque has learned that former US Presidents William Jefferson Clinton and George W Bush will meet for the very first time ever in an intimate conversation in front of a live audience. This "very special event" will take place on Friday May 29th at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. Sources close to the event tell Bourque that speeches and a moderated Q & A session will run from 4 PM to 5:30 PM. A formal announcement is to be made in the coming days. G&M Update: Er, what Bourque said Sunday ...

***

April 16

Ekos: Lib 36.7% Con 30.2% Ndp 15.5% Bq 9.4% Grn 8.1% ...

***

April 10

***

April 8

Strategic Council: Lib 34% Con 32% Ndp 15% Bq 10% Grn 9% ...

***

April 6

If Bourque is a regular read for you ...
Kindly donate: $25 - $50 - $100 - $250 - $500 ... Other

***

Saturday, March 21

Nanos: Lib 36% Con 33% Ndp 13% Bq 10% Grn 8% ...

***

Tuesday, March 17

AngusReid: Con 35% Lib 31% Ndp 16% Grn 7% ....

***

Monday, March 9


Cdn Grand-Am racer identified as one of the victims ...
Kicking Horse avalanche victims were skiing off-limits
Bourque: Hima will be missed by the many who knew him
Hima Maher, RIP ...

--

Ipsos: 37% Lib 33% Ndp 12% Bq 10% Grn 8%
StratCounc: Con 35 % Lib 31 % Ndp 16 % Bq 10 % Grn 9 % ...

***

Thursday, Feb 12

Nanos: Con 34% Lib 33% Ndp 16% Bq 10%

***

Saturday, Feb 5

Ipsos: Con 37% Lib 31% Ndp 14% ...

***

Friday, Feb 6


Whine Room's Gilligan steps in it again
HAPLESS IGGY ADJUNCT BLASTED FOR ART SLUR


Poinsettia, much maligned by Liberal Whine Room art critic Gilligan, sold for $600 to a collector in Montreal. 100% proceeds to the Canadian Forces Military Families Fund. Winner also gets my slightly used and pretty good Sh*t From Hell CD if I can find it. (Raymaker, unheralded, rocks! A genius of the genre, wrestling his instrument with audacity and alacrity.) Thanks to all who participated ! - pierre

***

Monday, Feb 2

Meanwhile, good news from G&M's Phil Crawley

From: Crawley, Phillip
Sent: Monday, February 02, 2009 3:51 PM
To: ~Permanent Staff All Branches
Subject: Announcement on VSP

I am pleased to announce that the Voluntary Separation Program announced last month met with a very positive response. Sixty people were informed last Friday that their applications were successful. They will be leaving The Globe and Mail by the end of this week, so please take the opportunity to say goodbye to colleagues, many of whom have worked for the company for many years. They come from all departments; nineteen are non-union staff, and forty-one are union members.

This large uptake reduces the number of layoffs. Affected individuals will be notified over the course of the next week, starting tomorrow. Union representatives have been informed.

Phillip

***

Friday, January 30

Dominion Institute Reacts to Belleisle Elementary SchoolÕs Decision on National Anthem

Toronto Ð January 30, 2009 Ð The Dominion Institute is dismayed to learn of the decision by officials at Belleisle Elementary School (Belleisle, New Brunswick) to stop students from singing the national anthem at the beginning of each school day.

ÒSinging the national anthem is an important way of showing our pride in our country, our pride of being Canadian. We believe that our schools are an ideal place to help instill this pride in the next generation of citizens,Ó said Marc Chalifoux, the InstituteÕs Executive Director. ÒWe hope that Principal Erik Millett and the schoolÕs official will revisit their decision.Ó

The Dominion Institute says it would be happy to work with the school in order to send a delegation of Canadian veterans to talk with the principal and staff about the importance of the national anthem and what it means to Canadian military service men and women. The Dominion InstituteÕs flagship programme, The Memory Project, is a speakersÕ bureau of 1,500 veterans who share their stories of service and sacrifice with over 175,000 Canadian students every year.

Sid Gladstone is an Air Force veteran of the Second World War who speaks with thousands of young people each year as part of the Memory Project, CanadaÕs largest veteran speakersÕ bureau . ÒAs a veteran, I believe it is important that every young person across Canada recognize what a privilege it is to live in this country,Ó said Mr. Gladstone. ÒReciting the national anthem is the least we can do to honour the service and sacrifice of our soldiers, both young and old.Ó

A recent survey by the Dominion Institute found that only 53% of Canadians know that the first line of CanadaÕs national anthem is, ÒO Canada! Our home and native landÉÓ

The Dominion Institute is a national charitable organization dedicated to creating active and informed citizens through greater knowledge and appreciation of the Canadian story.

-30-
For more information:

Marc Chalifoux
Executive Director Ð The Dominion Institute
416.602.9721 (cell) / marc@dominion.ca

***

Tuesday, January 27

Author John Updike dead ...
CTV: Tom Clark's new Duffy replacement show to be called Power Play ...

***

Sunday, January 25


~ Robert Burns, born Jan 25, 1759 ~
ROBBIE BURNS DAY TODAY
Address to a Haggis
more ...

***

Friday, Jan 23

Ctv's Tom Clark gets Mike Duffy gig ...

***

Thursday, Jan 22

And the Oscar nominees are ...

***

Wednesday, Jan 21

Ekos: Con 36.2% Lib 32.6% Ndp 14.3% ...

***

Saturday, January 17


Bourque & Villeneuve at Canadian Motorsport Expo

--

AngusReid: Con. 39%, Lib. 30%, NDP 17%, BQ 9%, Grn. 5% ...

***

Monday, January 12


SLAM-DUNK: 49% WANT ADLER NEXT DUFFY
Audio: Bourque talks Duffy Show with CHML Hamilton's Bill Kelly
Audio Exclusive: Bourque puts the question direct to Adler

Who will be the next Mike Duffy ?

***

Friday, January 9

Nanos: Lib 34% Con 33% Ndp 19% Grn 7%

***

Tuesday, December 9

Morse Code:
Iggy storm signals growing ... whispers increasing he's staging a coup, refusing to let rank and file Liberals have a say in the future of their party ... rumours, unfounded or otherwise, his wife Zsuzsanna is not Canadian ... failed Ontario Premier David Peterson, of all people, touting Iggy's, er, leadership skills, somehow glossing over Iggy's kowtowing to the inept Dion's delusional coalition gimmick ... Iggy's cupboard's bare, no new policy ideas, no fundraising ideas, no exciting new blood drawn to the Liberal caucus, or so some say ... blind ambition tainting the wisdom of his mostly Toronto-centric backroom braintrust ...

***

Monday, December 8

This just in from a Bourque reader ...

Heard heard
"As you all know, I am a modest, gentle soul, with many friends and no enemies -- not even Eddie Goldenberg, my colleague in the Short Canadians with Small Egos Club. I now want to add the word "prescient" to my list of attributes.

A year ago, at least, I went on the Mike Duffy show to demand that Dion be dumped because he truly was an idiot savant. I was not only ridiculed for this treasonous call, but vilified. Then, when Stephane Dion said he would indeed quit, but only in May, I again went public with the demand that he should go....now.

Again, ridicule and anger.

I also condemned the "coalition" stunt as a deal with the twin devils of socialism and separatism that would ruin the Liberal Party in a fashion similar to the fall of the British Liberals. The reaction was sheer outrage. How dare Ray Heard say mean things like that! The Coalition was a brilliant strategy aimed not at survival, but success. Then, I went even further, saying Michael Ignatieff should immediately be installed by the caucus as the interim Leader because the Party needs smart direction now as the economy goes to Hell in a handbasket.

Well, friends, everything I suggested is happening now. Dion is toast. The Coalition is toast. Iggy is set gracefully to accept the Throne. I feel totally vindicated as other, greater minds -- perhaps even those of David Smith and Alfred Apps -- reach the same conclusions I reached when, with Stephen Le Drew some of the time, I was a voice in the Grit wasteland..

I have to add that I was equally prescient, and equally unpopular, when, serving John Cleghorn at Royal Bank, I told him and Matt Barrett of BMO their merger project was dead-on-arrival because they had not bothered to give notice of their intentions to Jean ChrŽtien and Paul Martin.

All the overpaid consultants, lobbyists, flacks and pollsters (most of them Matt's unctuous suits) on the merger team dismissed me as an hysterical former journalist. Eleven long months later, when Martin said no, I gracefully accepted their apologies.

Cheers -- as I prepare to celebrate my 73rd birthday surfing a mean left rock break in Costa Rica!

Ray Heard

***

Sunday, December 7

Rae tryint to backdoor the Libs
From a Bourque reader: "Dear Pierre, I read your site daily. I am the former member of the Liberal party National Executive. Bob Rae and the others cannot change the Liberal Party Constitution. The rules that are currently in place where put there to ensure that we did not follow the British Parliament process of the Caucus choosing the leader to the exclusion of the party rank and file.

The rule are clear and straight forward, I do not know the exact sections but I do rember the following principals:

1. If the leader resigns, the National Executive in consultation with the caucus will appoint an Interim Leader until a leadership convention. They cannot appoint a permanent leader

2. This question came up in 1988 when the caucus tried to get rid of John Turner. I believe if you look hard you will find Michel Robert (LPC President at the time) stated that fact and given his legal background it was accepted as fact. It should also be pointed out that he was no friend of John Turner.

Please do not use my name, but this fact is clear, Bob Rae is trying to take over LPC via the back door."

Friday, Dec 5


Manley: Dion delusional
Manley: "As a Liberal, I believe the first step for my party is to replace StŽphane Dion as leader with someone whose first job is to rebuild the Liberal Party, rather than leading a coalition with the NDP" ... The notion that the public would accept StŽphane Dion as prime minister, after having resoundingly rejected that possibility a few weeks earlier, was delusional at best" ...

A reader responds: "Manley just became the front-runner. The Liberals are dead if they pick someone who danced with the separatist devils. That includes Rae and Iggy. By the time of the convention, Liberal delegates will have one goal in mind, and that will be to wipe this stain - and those who put it there - from the voters' minds. Manley's head must be spinning to see the leadership set out on a platter, his for the taking. All he has to do is condemn Iggy and Rae and remind people that these two threatened the very future of their party, and of our country, over personal ambition."

***

Canadians Call for an Election
Below, highlights from a new Canada-wide, COMPAS Research poll on the recent turmoil in the House of Commons. The complete report can be downloaded at www.compas.ca. Permission is granted to publish or broadcast results provided COMPAS Inc. is appropriately cited.

For comments or inquiries, please contact COMPAS President Conrad Winn at (416) 598-0310 or on his direct cell at (416) 460-5844.

By a more than 2:1 margin, Canadians call for another election if the choice faced by the Governor-General were between inviting Stephane Dion to form a government and hold a fresh general election weeks after the most recent one. That is the key finding from a national representative poll completed December 4, 2008.

If an election were held today, Stephen Harper would win a large majority based on nation-wide support of 51% compared to 20% for the Liberals, 10% for the NDP, 6% for the Greens, and 8% for the Bloc. Harper would sweep seat-rich Ontario with 53% of the vote compared to 24% for the Liberals and 10% for the NDP in that province and would surpass Dion in Quebec with 32% of the vote compared to 19% for the Liberals and 35% for the Bloc.

Key factors in this lightening speed transformation of public opinion:

66% of Canadians oppose the Bloc Quebecois having a say in who forms the government;

48% have confidence in Stephen Harper as Prime Minister in the current economic climate compared to 14% for Michael Ignatieff in second place, 11% for NDP leader Jack Layton, 8% for Stephane Dion, 4% for Bob Rae, and 3% for Gilles Duceppe;

54% believe that the Coalition's real motivation was a power grab while 28% perceive the Opposition as honestly believing that Harper is a poor manager of the economy;

61% believe that the Liberals, following their drop in support in the October election, should not be trying to form a government.

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Thursday, Dec 4

Majority (68%) of Canadians from Every Part of Country Supports Governor GeneralÕs Decision to Prorogue Parliament

Fear and anger grips the nation as almost three quarters (72%) of Canadians say they are truly scared for the future of the country with what is going on in Ottawa

Toronto, ON -Whatever arcane elements of Parliamentary democracy or convention weighed heavily on the shoulders of Canada's Governor General Micha‘lle Jean in deciding what next steps to take concerning the latest political leadership crisis to affect the country, she did so with the majority support of the Canadian public in agreeing to Prime Minister Harper's request to prorogue Parliament until January 26, 2009 when a new Conservative budget can be brought down and voted on as a matter of confidence.

In this respect, a majority (68%) of Canadians from every part of the country (including 55% in Quebec), believe that Parliament should be ended now, but the Harper Conservatives remain in power until the government is possibly defeated by the coalition in January, 2009. This compares with only 29% who believe that the Conservatives should accept defeat in Parliament now and turn power over to the Coalition.

And if the Prime MinisterÕs request had not been acceded to it is clear that, given a choice, the majority (56%) believe the Governor General should have dissolved Parliament and initiated an election rather than accepting the proposal from the newly formed coalition of the Liberal, New Democratic and Bloc Quebecois parties to form the government (38%).

In fact, the national poll conducted by Ipsos Reid for Canwest News Service and Global National on Tuesday and Wednesday night, and following the televised address by both the Prime Minister and the Leader of the Coalition, indicates that the Harper Conservative government has the support of six in ten (60%) Canadians to Ôfight and do everything they can legally do to continue governing because of the severe economic situation the country faces, and the fact that the Liberals and the NDP have entered into an Òunholy dealÓ with the Bloc separatistsÕ. This compares with only four in ten (37%) who believe that Ôit's proper that a smooth transition of power to the Coalition takes placeÕ.

What Canadians are witnessing has shaken them pretty much to the core: almost three quarters (72%) of Canadians indicate that they are truly scared for the future of the country with what is going on in Ottawa and the majority (62%) is angry with the Coalition taking over power from the governing Conservatives -- in fact, a majority in every region of the country is angry at the situation, except in Quebec where only 39% expressed this view.

The potential backlash against the Coalition partners is now palpable in the data: if a Federal election were held today it's likely that the Conservatives would reap a very large majority government with 46% of decided voters supporting the Conservatives, compared with 23% for the Liberals, 13% for the NDP, 9% for the Bloc Quebecois (37% in QuŽbec) and 8% for the Green party. Five percent (5%) remain undecided.

These are some of the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted December 2nd and December 3rd, 2008 on behalf of the Canwest News Service and Global Television. In the public domain, these results can be used by any person or entity, including other news organizations.

For the survey, a representative randomly selected sample of 1,001 adult Canadians was interviewed by telephone.

With a sample of this size, the results are considered accurate to within ±3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what they would have been had the entire adult population of Canada been polled. The margin of error will be larger within regions and for other sub-groupings of the survey population. These data were weighted to ensure that the sample's regional and age/sex composition reflects that of the actual Canadian population according to Census data.

For copies of the full release plus detailed tables at 6:00 am December 5, 2008, and other news releases, please visit ipsos-na.com

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Donolo wades in
"Even Osama bin Laden's videos looked more professional than Dion's" ...
- Former Chretien communications czar Peter Donolo

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Bedrock Lib weighs in: Realist Liberals should cross the floor

As a lifelong Liberal, may I suggest that two can play this lethal Coalition game.

If Dion can rule in a sleazy new order driven by the separatists (rest in peace, PET!), logic dictates that some centre-right Liberals might regard Harper as the lesser of the two evils and cross the floor to join him, at least temporarily. According to reports on the Web a few of the Ignatieff stripe are already entertaining this prospect. The upshot would be a true division of political authority in Ottawa at last: The forces of the Left, embracing Dion's expedient, power-mad Liberals, the NDP and the equally socialistic Bloc and a Centre-Right group, consisting of the necessarily more moderate Conservatives and Realist Liberals. After all, Harper, even though he is a bully and who inflicted this crisis on himself, at the very least supports a strong, united Canada, unlike Dion's separatist allies.

Meanwhile, may I recommend to Dion and his caucus drones that they read the essays of the late Oxford historian, AJP Taylor, on the decline and fall of the British Liberals. By seeking a coalition with the Loony Left and the separatists, they are on a similar march of folly to the one that destroyed their equally arrogant British cousins who made deals with devils.

Oh, a final thought: Surely all paid up members of the Liberal Party should be allowed to vote on whether to enter a coalition with our hitherto mortal socialist and separatist foes? Or is the Liberal party now the preserve of a clique of self-empowered MPs who would liquidate the noble legacy of Trudeau to consort with the likes of the triumphant Gilles Duceppe and the smarmy Layton?

Raymond Heard

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Wednesday, Dec 3

This 'n that ...
PM Stephen Harper spoke to the nation on TV, denouncing the separatist coalition as threat to Canada ...

Coalition leader Stephane Dion, 25 minutes late, waded in with his thoughts, the book 'HOT AIR' inexplicably propped up on a shelf behind his head, as he peered out to viewers "like the leader of some sort of third-rate coup, being filmed in his hideout with one of his accomplices sticking a cheap video camera in his face", seemingly oblivious to the fact that the main CTV network had dumped him due to his tardiness ...

Ndp icon Bill Blaikie says the Ndp may abandon coalition if Harper relents on some economic issues ...

Good news for Dion, Layton, & Duceppe, the Communist Party endorses their coalition ...

An avid Bourque reader asks, "Just where are the Ignatieff and Rae ?". A good question, to which an answer is deserved: Laying low, getting pounded by federalist liberals and ordinary citizens alike, all eager to lambaste the duo for conspiring and agreeing to do a deal with the separatist devils ...

Dion's act of clarity: According to Jacques Parizeau, "An impressive victory for Duceppe and the Bloc ... we've made immense gains ... the deal we've made Dion sign will make separatists smile ... Quebec sovereignty is once again the order of the day !" ...

And how was your day ? ...


DEPUTY-PRIME MINISTER LAYTON It's the stuff that political dreams, and nightmares, are made of. A hopeless duo of political leaders recently cast aside by the electorate, contemplating their wounds in silence, when suddenly divine providence hints at potential salvation. Or was it Eve extending her delicately inviting hand, proffering a bright shiny apple on a bed of fleur-de-lys. Bourque has learned the price of collusion for Ndp Leader Jack Layton. Sources close to Stephane Dion are confirming to Bourque that Layton will likely become Deputy-Prime Minister in a Liberal-led coalition government where the NDP will get 25% of cabinet seats, most of them relating to social issues key to the party's recent electoral platform. Meanwhile, we learn that Layton is in a deep tizzy over whether or not he deserves 'equal time' on national tv tonight to, er, address the nation alongside the Prime Minister and the Leader of Her Majesty's Loyal Opposition. Developing.

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Tuesday, Dec 2


EXCLUSIVE: IGGY RETHINKS COALITION - CRACK IN THE COALITION Finally, a sign of sanity. Better late than never. A first serious sign of leadership from the presumptive leader-in-waiting.

Senior Ignatieff insiders are tantalizingly whispering to Bourque that the Toronto MP is having grave doubts about supporting the shocking Dion coalition bid, now labelled by many as the "Separatist Coalition", given the defining support it has from both the BQ's Gilles Duceppe and former PQ Premier Jacques Parizeau.

One longtime senior Ignatieff backer, under condition of anonymity, confided that "Michael is in a tenuous situation and he is feeling a lot of heat from caucus colleagues and constituents alike. Frankly, we think we got snookered by Bob Rae on this one".

It nets out to this, according to this longtime Liberal and echoed by many other key backroom players: ordinary Liberals across the country, the card-carrying bbq-ing door-knocking envelope-stuffing phone-banking kind who make up the backbone of the party and who would need to be counted on to support his leadership aspirations, are vehemently rejecting the Dion argument that a deal with the separatist Bloc Quebecois is in the best interests of Canada.

"Bullshit", said one Liberal power-broker, who was quick to point out Dion is tilting at Liberal history for the sake of a short stint at 24 Sussex.

"Dion is nuts", he told Bourque, "I am ashamed he is leading the party of Laurier, Pearson, Trudeau, and Chretien - my God, Chretien, the guy who poured out his federalist heart against Rene Levesque's country-killing forces so long ago - I am ashamed Dion is selling us out."

He and the others are right, of course.

Add to that a comment from one of Canada's leading media personalities, who told Bourque this evening that "the Liberals can never again say that they are the guardians of National Unity".

He has a sobering point, unfortunately.

Ignatieff, in turn, would be right to heed the growing chorus of advice from his own braintrust and to distance himself from this embarrassing marriage of expedience fueled by nothing more than the personal egos and ambitions of a relatively few desperate 'inside-the-beltway' political personalities, both elected and otherwise, the 'chip-on-their-shoulders' type who can't see beyond their disdain for Harper. In short, no act of clarity whatsoever.

Meanwhile, Bourque can confirm that despite recent media reports to the contrary, former NB Premier Frank McKenna is not planning to be part of any Dion coaliton 'wise men sounding board'.

UPDATE 1:Former Lib MP & Deputy PM John Manley is also now distancing himself from Dion's unholy alliance, telling a G&M confcall that his inclusion in Dion's wise men sounding board is news to him. "I havent agreed to do anything", he said ......

UPDATE 2: Insiders are telling Bourque late this evening that "at least 15 opposition members are ready to break ranks and, if necessary, sit as independents. This group rumoured to include Dryden (although denied by Dryden aide Cory Pike), Tonks, Bevilacqua (from Grits) and Angus (NDP)" (though Charlie tells Bourque he is amused by the suggestion he will bolt over the Dion coalition). Bourque is also hearing that "at least three Bloc members are considering same course of action and there maybe at least two Tories thinking of going the other way (as independents) - Michael 'Cheech' Chong (although denied by Chong bong Lori Dawe) and backbencher Lee Richardson." ...

FLASHBACK: (H@H, Aug 27) '... the GG picks up her iPhone and calls Dion over at Stornoway. Dion, tying flies in the attic, answers his portable phone, and the GG tells him what just went down with Harper. She asks him if he thinks he can form a government. Dion harrumphs he's ready to go to an election and is highly confident of winning a decisive majority. "No, you dummy", responds the GG, I am asking if you think you can form a government now. Can you pull together enough MPs to form a government ..." ... Developing ...

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Monday, Dec 1

The Three Stooges of Coupscam
by Charles Adler
Also listen to this on audio ...

Let's be clear about something. The ECONOMY has NOTHING to do with the not so silent coup that is taking place as we watch history...need a name for it? remember Adscam? Call this one COUPSCAM. It's a perfect name for what's happening on several levels and it is so Canadian..So bilingual. So au bilingue. COUPSCAM. A coup that is dressed up as a bid by the opposition to help the economy. Of course it is not anything close to that, as we learned over the weekend when we heard the tape of Jack Layton telling his caucus, that he had a deal in place way back when with Gilles Duceppe, to strike when the iron became hot. The economy would simply be the rationale used to hit, and to hit hard. One needs to forgive anyone who regular votes Liberal if they feel some shame listening to Jack Layton the of the archicects of the coup, who along with Bloc Quebecois leader Gilles Duceppe, leading the Liberals into the corral. The Liberals were at one time known as the natural national governing party. They now have become the sheep being herded by the two great sheep herders of Canada, the two men who are motivated by their love of country? Now to quote from Sheep herder Layton from his weekend NDP caucus meeting..."WeÕre in the middle of a very historic time, and weÕre playing a key role in it, in some ways a catalytic role actually, because as we think back, weÕll realize that nobody really imagined that it would be possible for the Bloc Quebecois, the Liberal party of Canada ever to enter into any kind of a discussion around the future of the country and it turned out that we were the glue, and spotted and prepared for the opportunity, and had taken the steps that were required so that when that opportunity arose, which was when Mr. Harper made his disastrous strategic error, by not providing stimulus to the economy, and instead playing political games, we were able to move, and things began to move very quickly, however, many obstacles remain in our way, and so weÕre in a real battle now. The negotiating process, I am, by the way in very regular touch with the leader of the Liberal party, and the leader of the Bloc, frequently every day."

So there you have it Sheep Herder Layton saying that they were preparing for the opportunity and it arose last week. This is known in polite circles as opportunism. Many of you who have emailed me in the last few days have been calling it treason. For the record this is not legal treason. But one would not be on shaky ground in calling it ethical treason. Nobody doubts that this plot is undermining confidence in Canada and nobody doubts that this will sew seeds of resentment in various parts of Canada. Nobody doubts that it will make this a less unified country. Imagine the reaction in Western Canada if a coup led by the the Toronto based NDP of Jack Layton and Quebec separatists manages to succeed and in doing so , immediately does damage to their number one economic target the ENERGY industry. Does anyone doubt that the pols in the east who want to hit the Conservatives will, if given power, hit the energy industry? The can do with carbon taxes and other schemes designed to attack Western Canadian wealth. These sheep herders know that the flames of Western Separatism will immediately be ignited and how could that possibly damage the fortunes of Quebec Separatism? A growing western separatist movement is Quebec sovereignty's best friend. Is it any wonder that Gilles Duceppe acts like a guy who knows he will have one very Merry Christmas? Does anyone find it ironic that people like Jean Chretien and Stephane Dion who made reputations for themselves as staunch federalists would now in the lust for naked power lie down with the separatist lion. Coupscam has many consequences. And a damaged confederation is just one of them. Those who thrive on chaos, people like Jack Layton and Gilles Duceppe and Bob Rae are loving this. One of the big questions today is What is Michael Ignatieff thinking? If he is using that big brain of his, as opposed to the little brain some of the plotters are using, he will understand that a Liberal government dog that is being wagged by a NDP/BlocQuebecois tale is a dog that will be euthanized by the Canadian voter.

Folks what you need to remember the most about COUPSCAM is that it could not happen without an incredible amount of blood lust coming from ancient liberal party hacks who have seen the set on their empire. One of those hacks is Scott Reid. He used to be a Paul Martin guy, his communications guy, during the decline and fall of Liberalism in the wake of ADSCAM. Scott Reid took his bitterness and blood lust to his computer key board on the weekend and tapped out the following. If you have some tiny shreds of doubt about what motivates Liberals to get on board Coup Scam, this will shred the shreds.

"After all, Stephen Harper is the most dangerous animal lurking in the jungles of Parliament, writes Scott Reid. Kill him. Kill him dead. Do not, whatever you do, provide him with an opportunity to extend his hold on power. Because you can be damn certain he will never again be so reckless as to give you a chance to finish him off. ..The other elephant in the room is leadership. Stephane Dion has bargained his way to the drive wheel of the new government. Good for him, but only if it suits the greater good. If Mr. Dion can make his case, then great. If he can't, move to an alternative - and do it fast. Mr. Harper knows that his greatest advantage lies in Mr. Dion's weakness. The coalition can't let that impulse triumph. Don't permit the defeat of Mr. Harper to depend upon Mr. Dion's personal credibility - or that of any single individual, for that matter. There's too much at stake."

Those are the words of former Paul Martin communications director Scott Reid. They tell you 2 things. 1) Coup Scam is not about serving the public interest. It is about putting hemlock in Stephen Harper's orange juice. It is not about economic satisfaction. It is about political assassination. 2) Reid points out while Harper is the target, Dion needs to be either a useful dunce or an expendable nuisance. The plotter who wishes to kill Harper could care less about whether or not Dion is collateral damage. There's too much at stake says the Liberal hack. No single individual matters. No single individual can be permitted to get in the way. And so the man who was part of the plot to overthrow Jean Chretien,not for economic reasons or patriotic reasons but for the most partisan of reasons, now wishes to destroy Stephen Harper.

There are a few things I'd like to say personally to the major players in Coup Scam.

To Jack Layton:

Jack a couple of months ago you said you wanted to be prime minister and that was the job you were applying for. You had to know at the time that you would not get that job going through the front door and that was confirmed with the election results. But since Harper was a dozen seats short of a majority, you saw your move and you made it and over the weekend, you confessed it. It's now on tape as historical record. I guess if you are looking for a seat at the cabinet table, this is as good as it gets. Bet you're disappointed as hell that Svend Robinson is no longer a member of your caucus. Bet you think he would make as good a foreign affairs minister as you would a finance minister. Good luck with that Jack. And wish us all good luck. The Stock Market is just above 8 thousand 4hundred today. I guess from your perspective that is still 8 thousand four hundred more than your favorite number for Capitalism, ZERO.

To Gilles Duceppe:

Well I have to admit you must be laughing all the way to the bank these days. When it come to fund raising your separatist brothers are more bankrupt than Lehman Brothers. But over the last few years the Canadian taxpayer has sent you more than 5 million dollars. You sit in the hammock. We send you millions. It's a great deal for you and about to get a lot better. While you won't likely have a seat at the cabinet table, you will be an armed guard at the door, and if they don't do the right things at the table, I suppose you can take them hostage, or to use Scott Reid's words, just kill them all. Who knows? Maybe since you are holding the gun, maybe you can negotiate yourself a cabinet portfolio. May I respectfully suggest Minister of National Disunity.

And finally to Stephane Dion:

It must be a great disappointment to you Mr. Dion that as someone who prided himself on being an arch enemy of separatism, that your final political act is to become it's lap dog. Hard to believe you are doing this. At one point these bums characterized you as a rat. That graphic of you as a rat with the long narrow nose and the rat whiskers, was plastered everywhere in Quebec. You betrayed Quebec they said. You were a rat. These creeps and and thugs even blamed you for your own father's suicide. They said he killed himself because he was ashamed of you. And now you are willing to break bread with them and break the democratic will of the Canaidian voter. And all for what? So that you can have an asterisk in the Canadian history books. You can get the get the tax payer to pay for your six month lease on 24 Sussex Drive. Is this worth it to you Mr. Dion. Is this the way you want to go out, as a dog on a leash held by Jack Layton and Gilles Duceppe?

People over the years have told me that you are an honest man, a compassionate man, an earnest man. I now find it hard to think of you as a man. A man faces the voters and honours their decision. Now you have chosen to dishonour their decision, to dishonour democracy, to dishonour Canada.

Canada will survive Coupscam. I always have faith in the inherent decency of the Canadian people. But we will pay a heavy price. Our loony will get plucked. Our wealth will get plundered and at times our faith in Canada and pride in its people will be tested. But we will survive. Canada has had much tougher opponents than Jack Layton, Gilles Duceppe and Stephane Dion, the Three Stooges of Coup Scam.

***

Would Neville Chamberlain please report to the front desk. A Mr. Dion is calling
The Liberal Party, which I joined in 1961, has done a Nixonian deal -- no, make that a Neville Chamberlain deal -- with two devils, the separatists and socialists, that will destroy it, just as the British Liberals fell after WW1 by compromising their principles in pursuit of unattianable power. How, pray tell me, can the Party of Trudeau agree to a deal in which the bottom-line is that a party dedicated to the destruction of Canada holds the balance of power for its survival? How, in a recession, can we allow Socialists to wield ministerial power over the economy? Why did the stock market tank again today, further eroding the hard-earned savings of Godf-fearing Canadians who, stupidly, in retrospect, trusted the Liberals?

Yes, Harper is a bully and Flaherty is a buffoon, but at least they support a united Canada, unlike our new allies. I thought until now that a united Canada was what the Liberal Party was all about. Obviously, its about expediency. Shame on you Jean Chretien and Stephane Dion, and Iggy, Rae, Dominic, and all the others, including my errant protege, McCallum, who have mortgaged our futuire to the forces of destruction.

This, gentlemen, is a case of the arsonists running the fire brigade! I want out!.

- Ray Heard

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Monday, November 17

PM's Cadman re-jig
PM Harper has pulled Gowlings lawyer Richard Dearden from the Chuck Cadman case, replaced by David Wingfield at Weir Foulds, describes as one of Canada's leading domestic and cross border corporate-commercial, securities and class action litigators. It remains unclear as to the circumstance surrounding the re-jig and its impact on the outcome of the case, if any.

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Sunday, Nov 16

Team Bob Rae wades in:
By now, you'll have probably heard about the Ontario party's leader's debate that happened over the weekend. There's no better presentation of Bob's principled, candid stand on this than Bob's! See Bob show leadership on building an open party in this clip from CTV's Question Period this morning:

Here are a few points to keep in mind about this weekend's events.

* Here are the facts, as reported objectively by the Globe and Mail:

"Mr. Rae warned late Saturday that he wouldn't participate in the debate, blaming the Ignatieff camp for trying to keep a lid on the session. Mr. Ignatieff later insisted he was merely trying to follow the party's own rules. The party, however, said it would be willing to open up the debate if all three candidates agreed. Mr. Ignatieff was the only holdout." This account is also backed by CP, and CTV.

* Bob Rae has consistently called for numerous open debates as part of the leadership process. The principle is critical here. The Liberal Party needs to reach out beyond its existing base. It needs to use the leadership process to connect with more Canadians and bring them into the party. This is how the Democrats used the epic Obama-Clinton primary battle to draw in millions of new supporters. Liberals in Canada should do the same, and inviting Canadians into our process via full media access is a key art of this outreach.

* Bob Rae is happy to meet with Liberals anywhere, anytime. He met and mingled with Liberals at the LPC(O) Executive Board, as planned, but did not debate in the closed session.

* Bob Rae is calling on the Liberal Party to hold weekly, open, televised and webcast debates across the country among the candidates for the leadership of the Liberal Party of Canada. Rae's campaign has submitted to the party a proposal for "Debate Night in Canada" -- a debate every Thursday among the leadership contenders.

"If Barack Obama and Hilary Clinton can debate each other on TV 21 times in six months; surely Liberal leadership candidates can debate each other 13 times in the same period," said Rae. "These encounters proved enormously helpful for the Democratic party."

Let us know what you think by emailing us at info@bobrae.ca.

Sincerely,

The Bob Rae Team

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Saturday, Nov 15

Desperate measures for desperate times
White House dusts off Shafer's $500 Cabernet "Hillside Select" 2003. One of the world's, as well as Napa's, most profound Cabernet Sauvignons. Shows some graphite and pain grille notes intermixed with creme de cassis, licorice, camphor, and some spice box. Full-bodied, powerful, with fabulous fruit, silky tannins, and an intense mouthfeel, this is a gorgeous wine to drink while dining on "Fruitwood-smoked Quail", "Thyme-roasted Rack of Lamb", and "Tomato, Fennel and Eggplant Fondue Chanterelle Jus".

Pity Main Street's displaced and Wall Street's dispossessed, let them eat cake, preferably the one of a kind Jos Louis, undeniably the most popular snack cake in Canada, offering a rich chocolate experience to be enjoyed at an affordable price. Sadly, where's Mad Max when you need him.

On the other hand, it could be worse. Aging rocker and anti-poverty campaigner Sir Bob Geldof this week charged $100,000 to give a speech in Australia about world suffering.

Sigh.

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Friday, Nov 7

Hnatiuk new Christian Heritage Party leader
For Immediate Release:

A key aspect of this year's Christian Heritage Party convention was its leadership vote. Ron Gray, the Party Leader for the past 13 years is passing the torch to Jim Hnatiuk, a zealous candidate and party recruiter in Nova Scotia.

CHP delegates gave their resounding support with the first ballot win for Mr. Hnatiuk, who held the party's Deputy Leader position since 2005. Mr. Hnatiuk was one of three candidates to run for the leadership of the party. The party wants to thank Harold Ludwig and Rod Taylor for their candidacies.

Jim Hnatiuk has been a dynamic member of the CHP ever since he first joined in 2002. He became the Interim Nova Scotia President prior to being named the Deputy Leader. The party's only candidate in Atlantic Canada in the 2004 election (against incumbent Scott Brison) and 2006 election (against incumbent Gerald Keddy), he has worked tirelessly to expand the CHP's presence in Eastern Canada. As a result, the party ran five candidates in Nova Scotia in the recent election.

"I am absolutely encouraged by the overwhelming support I received," Jim Hnatiuk said. "It gives me the confidence to move forward with the goals and focus that I brought forward in my campaign."

Hnatiuk, who has spent a great deal of time thinking about improving the quality of the CHP's image, experimenting with various strategies in his own campaigns, is looking forward to strengthening the party's recruiting methods and building the membership across Canada, from coast to coast to coast.

Hnatiuk also wants to fill what he sees as a gap in the CHP's platform by developing policy to deal with the various concerns of the poor and low-income Canadians.

Hnatiuk was thrilled to see the increased number of delegates at this convention. "Many of the delegates here are young people," he said, "and they are the ones at the microphones, debating the resolutions."

Hnatiuk has been married to Ellen for 35 years They have two children and two grandchildren. He operates the largest hunting, fishing and taxidermy business in Nova Scotia. He retired from the Canadian Forces in 1995 after 25 years of service having attained the rank of Chief Petty Officer 1st Class.

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Monday, Nov 3

Twins in the Legislature !
Bourque reader Gail Walsh reports that "Jack Carr has given the Tories one more seat (yay!!) in the NB legislature. Jack won by 270 votes! Much celebration at he Fredericton Inn. This is the fist time in history twins will be sitting together in a Canadian legislature ! Jody Carr is a former Minister in the Bernard Lord government and currently represents an Oromocto, New Brunswick area riding."

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Tuesday, Oct 28

BREAKING: FRANK MCKENNA WILL NOT RUN FOR LIB LEADERSHIP ...
Frank McKenna announced today that he will not be a candidate for the leadership of the Liberal Party of Canada.

"Although I have been deeply moved by expressions of support for me from across the country, I have not been persuaded to change my long-standing resolve to exit public life for good. My only regret is that I cannot honour the expectations of friends and supporters who have shown enormous loyalty to me.

The challenge of winning the leadership, restoring the health of the Liberal Party and returning a Liberal majority government requires a longer time commitment than I am prepared to make.

There will be an ample number of well-qualified candidates to do this important work".

Mr. McKenna is not available for media interviews.

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Wednesday, October 23

Ray Heard wades in:
Get this! Frank McKenna was a huge hit in Mtl with Tony Blair today. He is NOT telling those who beg him to run that he will pass. I predict he will run, and recommend you re-read his brilliant paper for Tom Axworthy's Liberal Renewal Panel on Canada-US relationns.

Meanwhile, if the choice of the next leader is delayed until May, not only McKenna, but Belinda Stronach -- that's right Belinda -- may run.

Thirdly, and I have a good source, the brothers McGuinty are debating who should run. David will run and then fade to black if the choice is early; if it is in May, it will be DALTON...if McKenna is not there.

And what do Mckenna, Stronach and the bros McGuinty have in common with the front-runners, Rae and Ignatieff ? Access to cold hard cash -- lots of it.

Finally, to those Liberals, like my collegial friend David Smith who damn me for publicly endorsing Tory victor Peter Kent against the invisible Susan Kades in Thornhill, my response is that if Dion can endorse Elizabeth May, why can't I endorse Kent? Touche, eh! (Kent, by the way, has the Tory riding closest to a metropolitan core and one hopes he gets a Cabinet post, perhaps in international affairs.)

You Heard it here first here. Machiavelli, not to mention Monty Python, would love this circus.

--

Meanwhile, erstwhile Lib leadership possibility John Manley spotted hunched over plate of eggs @ Over Easy, downtown Toronto

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Monday, October 21

Iggy wants Dion voted out Thursday
Bedrock Liberal Ray Heard, last night waxing lyrical on the Mike Duffy TV show, of all places, prior to John Turner "Memories of Winston's" dinner, confides to Bourque that forces loyal to ambitious Liberal MP Michael Ignatieff want caucus to vote Stephane Dion out this coming Thursday. Meanwhile, the curious are wondering aloud why CTV Ottawa bureau chief Bob Fife keeps pimping the quaint leadership prospects of Lib MP Dominic Leblanc, of all people. But back to the Turner dinner, 'damn fine steak', as one attendee reported, and where the "keep the faith" take-home chocolate bar was a big hit. Spotted among the rabble, no less than both Iggy and Rae, each doing what they could to hide their cheshire cat grins while tenuously cobbling their links back to the Turner era and cautiously gauging support for their own respective imminent leadership runs.

--

Dion, not-so soon departed
Liberal leader Stephane Dion refuses to accept blame for debilitating electoral results ... he blames Conservative propaganda machine for adversely defining his public image, along with ineffective Liberal fundraising methods that desperately need modernizing ... Says he was proud of his electoral program, including the much-unloved Green Shift ... will not say if he will run in the next election or stay on as MP after the next leader is chosen at a leadership convention ... However, Senator Francis Fox says Dion has made an error in choosing to stay as interim leader without soliciting the support of the Party and instead "auto-proclaiming' himself as interim leader, while at the same time losing the 'moral authority' to stay on as leader ... Add to that former Lib CabMin Jean LaPierre, who says the idea that Dion can stay on to help raise funds for the party is preposterous given his proven inability to raise sufficient funds to date to repay his own leadership debts ...

***

Friday, October 17

Whither Dion ?
Source: Dion, a French citizen, may abandon politics,
move to France, teach at Sorbonne ...

***

Thursday, October 16

Ray Heard bells the cat
"Pierre, which Liberal MP, one wonders will have the guts to stand up now and publicly echo Leo Amery in demanding the resignation of the upward-mobile failure, Stephane Dion, who has taken the Grits to their lowest ebb since Confederation?

It was fellow-Conservative Amery who famously addressed his leader, the apostle of appeasement, Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, with these words, borrowed from Cromwell, before Chamberlain resigned in 1940 paving the way for Churchill:

You have sat too long here for any good you have been doing. Depart, I say,and let us have done with you. In the name of God, go!

Raymond Heard

***

Tuesday, Oct 14

Most accurate 2008 election pollster ?
Angus-Reid: Con 38% Lib 28% Ndp 18% Bloc 9% Grn 6%
Actual: Con 37.6% Lib 26.3% Ndp 18.2% Bloc 9.9% Grn 6.8%

***

Sunday, Oct 12


SENATOR MAY ? ENVIRONMENT MINISTER MAY ? HAS LIZ MAY SOLD US OUT ?
Where does Green Party leader Elizabeth May get her marching orders ? Increasingly it is becoming clear that it is not from her party members. With less than 48 hours to go before voters go to the polls across Canada, emotions are running high inside campaigns faltering within sight of the finish line. 50 so-called 'close ridings', in particular, are being pitched to May as do-or-die ridings where she can 'lead Greens to make a difference', presumably by inciting Green supporters to not vote Green, the idea being to support your party by not voting for it, a novel concept to say the least.

In recent hours, Bourque has heard from a number of senior political operatives, notably former senior Green Party standard bearer David Chernushenko, who told Bourque that "Integrity is when you make your actions consistent with your words and your promises. We all look for leaders with integrity. Too bad they are so hard to find.Green Party candidates should expect nothing but full and unwavering support from their leader. They have not received it. She has failed utterly in this one and most important obligation. To back them all to the end. In our 2006 leadership race, only when pushed by me, she promised Green Party members that of course she would back GP candidates 100 percent. Alas, the facts speak for themselves. If I were a candidate, I would be furious. I would feel let down by my leader when I needed her most. I wanted to stay out of this campaign entirely, but when I saw Green Party candidates, voters and donors being sideswiped, I could not stay silent. My friends and family deserve more respect. The Green Party is is not a "flag of convenience" to be raised and lowered on a whim."

For his part, senior Conservative strategist Tim Powers told Bourque that "Dion and May are hypocrites. It is about time that is finally being exposed. Both seem habitually unable to get beyond their own arrogance and recognize they are the biggest problems for each of their respective parties. "

Also heard from was a top Liberal organizer who admittedly worked on the leadership bid of one of Stephane Dion's rivals, in other words someone who has much to gain if Dion and his Green Shift are soundly defeated Tuesday. Yet, this still-very-active politico tells Bourque he fears a secret deal has been cooked between Dion and Elizabeth May (both unabashed disciples of ex-pat Kyoto godfather Maurice Strong, and both currently immersed in a vociferous round of 'doth protest too much' denial about a secret deal) which may explain why she has been meeting with "key Liberal organizers" and is now actively telling Green Party supporters to vote Liberal, of all things. This, according to our Liberal insider, in exchange for a possible Senate seat and a place as Environment Minister in a Dion-led government. To be clear, Ms May's curious strategy of backing Dion is creating ill-will within her own party to the point that "a lot of Green candidates are upset", according to one national news report this morning. Add to that the fact Dion himself is urging Greenies to go red and join the Liberals.

But as one top NDP strategist well known to media watchers across Canada told Bourque tonight, "Dion's backroom deal with May which was supposed to steal votes from Layton has backfired. Looking at the polls, the Greens are taking support from the Liberals, not New Democrats. Layton is up in every public tracking poll from the start of the campaign, while Dion is down. This will lead to many NDP pick ups - particularly in Toronto where Layton will spend the final day of the campaign. It's a massive political blunder, another example of DionÕs poor judgment. Here he is in the final days of the campaign in a fight with his surrogate, not the Prime Minister. While Dion teeters on the worst electoral showing since Confederation, New Democrats will have an unobstructed view to attack the PM on the final day of the campaign. The spat helps, not hurts, LaytonÕs growth."

Late tonight, Dion was, incredulously, heard saying to anyone who would listen that "Elizabeth May and I can be counted on to level with Canadians", of all things.

Meanwhile, Grit insider Ray Heard, perhaps the first Liberal to demand publicly many months ago that Dion should resign for sheer incompetence, is telling friends tonight that this news on Bourque of the May-orchestrated Green Shift to the Liberals comes as no surprise. "Its all part of a secret deal between Dion and May. But what maddens me is that, when I publicly endorsed my friend, Peter Kent, the Conservative in Thornhill because he deserves a seat in Ottawa, I was denounced as a traitor and worse by fellow-Liberals. Surely, if Dion can endorse May and persuade her to get her voters to defect to the Liberals at the eleventh hour, I have the same right to ask Grits to vote for Kent....This, friends, is another Liberal farce that will end in tragedy. I shall be the first (admittedly sorely jaundiced) Liberal to call for Dion's head when the votes are in late Tuesday."

Add to that comments from one of Canada's top media personalities, who told Bourque tonight, "if I were a member of the Greens, if i were a candidate for the Greens, I would see her as a traitor, how could i possibly think of her as someone who wants to grow the Greens. She is simply behaving as an agent for the liberals".

Oh, and by the way, fresh on the heels of Stephane Dion's Air Dud carbon-spewing campaign jet, now shocking news of the World Wildlife Fund's "25-day journey around the world by private jet", a $65,000 extravagance in "19 rows of spacious leather seats with full ergonomic support" enjoying "gourmet meals, chilled champagne [and] your own chef." All of which makes one wonder as to what lunacy is fueling the environmental set these days.

***

Thursday, Sept 11

"Len, we have a problem ... Ottawa Citizen newsroom votes 83% to strike"
Cpac: Con 37% Lib 32% Ndp 13% BQ 9% Grn 9%
"Len, we have a problem ... Ottawa Citizen newsroom votes 83% to strike"

***

Tuesday, September 9

Election Curios: Say it ain't so: Dion's Outremont candidate is former co-chair of separatist 'Oui' campaign in NDG during the '95 referendum ... Longtime Bourque reader Ryan Warawa is running for the Tories in Vancouver East ... Speaking of the Tories, they have lost their female candidate in Halifax, when Rosamond Luke dropped out ...Hey, which well-known politico is turning 40 in just a few days ... Multimedia reporter David Akin thinks the Tories are making fun of him ... And, was Goldy involved in this Hill & Knowlton election predictor ?

***

Monday, September 8

Green Rights

For Immediate Release:

Statement on the resolution of the trademark dispute with Green Shift Inc.

The Liberal Party of Canada and Green Shift Inc. have resolved their dispute over the "Green Shift" trademark. The Liberal Party of Canada will continue to use "Green Shift" under license from Green Shift Inc.

Green Shift Inc. is not affiliated with the Liberal Party of Canada and the grant of the license does not constitute an endorsement by Green Shift Inc. of the Liberal Party of Canada.

-30-

Contact:

Liberal Party of Canada Press Office
613-783-8403

***

Sunday, September 7


Election Curios:
From east to west, a midday drive through Canada's Capital, historically a bastion of Liberal support, reveals a one-side election sign war in favour of the Conservatives ...

A media notice from the Liberals announcing Stephane Dion's Day One election schedule shows nothing but a mid-afternoon shlep to a bedrock-safe Ottawa riding, followed by an 8 PM bus run to a downtown Montreal Holiday Inn, with reporters told to arrive early so someone called Jae Epworth can load their luggaged sundries onto the bus. Tough as all that sounds, Dion will get a very late start tomorrow, his first scheduled event being an 11 AM shmooze at a local riding campaign office. He'll follow that up with a Dawson College walkabout with astronaut-candidate Marc Garneau just after lunch before calling it a day after an early-evening meet/greet at a place called Buffet Crystal in his own riding. At this rate, he'll wear out most of his press entourage by the time they all have to board their Air Inuit charter to parts unknown later in the week ...

CBC's Peter Mansbridge inexplicably breaks away from hostile Dion press conference to go to the marginalized Bloq/Duceppe press'er ...

And what has become of the great man himself, Michael Fortier, Senator, Cabinet Minister, this and that and so on, has he resigned his Senate sinecure to tempt the electorate in west-end Montreal ? In short, insiders say no, at least not until tomorrow morning, when he is said to be handing in his letter of resignation to both the Senate Speaker and the GG. It remains unclear as to why the curious delay, though he has never been in any rush to actually run for Parliament. However, with the great man's resignation, the Tories fall that much further from any measurable level of control in the Upper House ...

***

Thursday, September 4


GUMDROPS: Stephen Harper set to meet GG Michaelle Jean just after 8 AM Sunday morning to dissolve Parliament, launch election, set for Oct 14th ... Iggy nemesis-turned top Edelman GR poohbah John Capobianco, a Toronto powerhouse in political circles, spotted angled over a plate of designer pizza at posh King St W noodleria Il Fornello ... Inbound Summa strategist Greg MacEachern spotted examining the luxuries at Winnipeg's posh Fort Garry Hotel this week ... Green Party leader Liz May has fired a Vancouver-area candidate by the name of John Shavluk, who has been makin a name for himself online recently ... the BC Conservative Party has fired its leader Wilf Hanni, as faceless and devoid of name recognition as any politician can fear to be ... Stick a fork in Monte, Solberg's done, he won't run again ... and that 'Green Shift' firm has stepped up its legal action against the Dion Grits ...

***

Monday, September 1

Meanwhile, The Dion Libs head to the 'Peg
Meanwhile, the Dion Libs are set to meet in Winnipeg this week ...at posh Fort Garry Hotel ...where luxurious rooms offer feather mattress beds and pillows, down duvet, fine italian linen, even bathrobes and Evian water brought all the way from France, regardless of carbon footprint, not to mention high-speed wireless internet for quick access to favourite online news destinations ...

While in the 'Peg, Dion's Libs will be able to take in 'the best brunch in town' right at the hotel, although ...it remains unclear if the embattled leader will avail himself of the on-site 'Ten Spa' where he can be 'treated and pampered in elegant surrounding', including a decadent 6-hour special where he can enjoy a 'custom facial, signature pedicure, hot cream manicure, mini body scrub, relaxtion massage, and the ever-popular 'Cleopatra Milk and Oil Cocoon' ...

Local celebrities who may or may not be within rubbing-shoulder proximity during the indulgent pampering include national radio host Charles Adler ...

However, it remains unclear what, if anything, Dion is planning to do to offset the carbon footprint of this pre-electoral political schmoozer ...

***

Thursday, August 21


Of he they sing
Some will deny it ever happened. Others will claim this jotting takes artistic license to embellish and entertain. A few others may well be too many sheets to the wind to remember anything worth remembering.

Yet, what can be claimed as undeniable fact is that a soothing miasma of Liberal grey matter, (including political wagon masters, communicators, even market researchers) will coalesce just east of Toronto this evening at the home of former Trudeau cabinet minister and current Senator David Smith, (a Dionista to some, a chameleon to others) in the hamlet of Cobourg (pop 18,210), known by long-tooth history buffs as the birthplace of Charles Arkoll Boulton, militia leader in the aptly monikered Red River Rebellion, perhaps symbolically the evening's patron saint.

So tonight the assembled, who span all flavours of Liberal red going back decades, will amply imbibe in both domestic and imported wines, lowlands single malt, iced Canadian rye, and pungent Cuban stogies said to be rolled the old-fashioned way, against the soft sun-kissed inner-thighs of virgin Caribbean damsels.

They will indulge in weighty dialogue, blueskying a palpable return from the political after-life that has been their lot since the last election. Ideas will flow, hope will extend, drama will galvanize, personal greed will be altruistically couched, and an intoxicating elixir will be potioned.

And in between imagined morsels of welsh rarebit, shavings of smoked Kawartha Lakes canard, skewers of President's Choice shish-k-bob, and ears of locally-harvested corn, those in attendance will doff their clothing and bathe in a pool of planning bordering on the Machiavellian. The spectre of a fall election, to be sure, will be tossed and weighed. But the notion of leadership will be profoundly dissected.

And the incandescent aura of a wished-for future federal leader will burn brightly over the shadows of the night.

Developing ...

***

Sunday, Aug 3


Bourque's Mohawk Internet Technologies Dodge
finishes 11th @ Montreal Nascar race ...

***

Saturday, Aug 2

Bourque and Mohawks Are Off to a Great Start at Montreal NASCAR Race
Mohawk Internet Technologies is Partnering With #29 Entry This Weekend

CONCORD, NC (August 2, 2008) Ð The NASCAR Canadian Tire Series is in action this weekend in Montreal as part of the NASCAR Nationwide SeriesÕ historic appearance in Canada this weekend. Pierre Bourque will take part in the weekend of racing at Montreal's Ile Notre Dame on the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in the NASCAR Canadian Tire Series event at the road course on Saturday.

Bourque got off to a solid start on Friday, as preparations began for the race. In opening practice, he started out as fourth quickest. Later on, brake issues limited him to a 17th-place qualifying run, but those issues have been rectified and Bourque is very optimistic about the race.

ÒOur first practice session went terrific,Ó said Bourque. ÒThe car was very, very good and fast. However, we uncovered some serious braking issues afterwards and this track has some very high speed braking points. So we bled the brakes, changed brake pads and made some adjustments. That caused us to qualify in the middle of the pack, but IÕm so proud of everything that the Whitlock Motorsports crew did to the Mohawk Internet Technologies Dodge. There is a lot of energy and enthusiasm from the whole team about this race. We should be terrific and hope to end the day with a top 10 finish.

The #29 Whitlock Motorsports-prepared Dodge that Bourque is racing at Montreal is being sponsored by Mohawk Internet Technologies for this race. It is the first venture for the Mohawks into NASCAR racing and Bourque is excited about the partnership

"I am really excited about this groundbreaking collaboration with Mohawk Internet Technologies,Ó said Bourque. ÒTo my knowledge, this is the first time a Mohawk business has entered the world of NASCAR. Not only am I thrilled to have their support, but I am also a longtime client and I can attest first-hand to the quality and performance of their cutting-edge services and technology."

ItÕs not just Bourque who is excited either. In fact, both sides of the partnership are thrilled with the arrangement for the weekend.

"In over 400 years, the Mohawk people have never been defeated in battle, and it is with that knowledge and sense of history that we are proud to place the name of Mohawk Internet Technologies on the car of #29, Mr. Pierre Bourque, whom we believe will carry that tradition forward,Ó said Chuck Barnett, Board of Supervisors for Mohawk Internet Technologies.

Bourque is in a great position to carry along that tradition. He is a veteran of both road racing and stock car disciplines and the Montreal event will require proficiency in both areas for a driver to take home a good finish.

Mohawk Internet Technologies (MIT) is a unique business initiative of the Mohawk Council of Kahnawake (MCK) and its business partners. Keeping with the historic tradition of the North American trading post, MIT serves as one of the predominant electronic business centers on the Internet. MIT is not a bank, casino, or on-line store, but rather the internet service provider for numerous e-businesses who enjoy fast, reliable internet access in a free-enterprise environment specifically geared towards cross-business alliances and development.

The NASCAR Canadian Tire event at Montreal will take place on Saturday, August 2nd.

For more information on Pierre Bourque, please contact Mike Twist at (207) 499-2565 and be sure to check out PierreBourque.net.

For more information on Mohawk Internet Technologies, please visit, http://www.mohawk.ca.

***

Monday, July 28

Bourque: Here's a thought, if we've reached a point where it's ok to shoot two-year-olds,
maybe it's time to rethink Afghan mission ... or at least its leadership ...

***

Thursday, July 10

Bourque on 580 CFRA OTTAWA with Rob Snow ...

***

Wednesday, July 9


Lest we forget, we are the Dead
3:30 pm this aft, I was near Port Hope, Ont heading east on the 401. It was pouring rain like you wouldn't believe. Yet on each and every overpass, cars and fire trucks were stopped and dozens of people were standing in the rain and holding their Canadian flags, all waiting to welcome another fallen hero home. I can't tell you how emotional the scene was ... and when, moments later, I encountered the official funeral procession - police cars, hearse, flashing lights etc ... It went right past me in the opposing direction and despite my best efforts, my cheeks were moist with tears ... For less than a heartbeat I was mere feet away from a man who had given up all of his heartbeats, the ultimate sacrifice to this country of ours ... Man, I wasn't expecting that today ... - pierre

***

Saturday, June 28

Carbolic Adscam Postscript Splits Libs
Bourque has learned that consummate Liberal insider Ray Heard is on the warpath, blasting "Eddie, the shameless apologist for Jean ChrŽtien' who he says is "grossly twisting the facts in suggesting that Paul Martin owes ChrŽtien an apology for appointing the Gomery Commission in the light of the Federal Court ruling."

In an email circulated to a small cadre of insiders that was obtained by Bourque early this afternoon, the bedrock Liberal and former John Turner communications director berates Chretien's "Eddie" and lays bare "our dispirited party", which "faces certain defeat under the leadership of the incompressible Dion". The full text of Heard's missive follows:

"Eddie, the shameless apologist for Jean ChrŽtien, is grossly twisting the facts in suggesting that Paul Martin owes ChrŽtien an apology for appointing the Gomery Commission in the light of the Federal Court ruling.

As a lawyer, Eddie should know full well that the Federal Court did not suggest the Martin regime did anything wrong in commissioning Gomery to get to the bottom of Adscam outrage. It did condemn Judge Gomery for his biased public musings about Mssrs.Chretien and Pelletier in his blatant effort to become a media darling. This is a serious and deserved rebuke for Gomery, but it does not deal with the wisdom of appointing an inquiry in the first place. Indeed, Paul showed great courage and put the national interest ahead of the party interest in launching the investigation.

As a former communications director to Turner, who was under relentless subterranean attack from the losing ChrŽtien forces, led by the aforesaid Eddie, may I suggest to him and his ilk that its long past time for the ChrŽtien stalwarts to bury the hatchet with the Martinites, who admittedly used the same underhand tactics to undermine ChrŽtien when he was in power that the Chretienites had used against my boss? After all, former bitter rivals Brian and Joe are friends now. Why not Jean and Paul as our dispirited party faces certain defeat under the leadership of the incompressible Dion and prepares to elect a more viable Leader after he returns to academia?

This is 2008 -- not 1988, Eddie!

Ray Heard"

***

Wednesday, June 25

Gazette scribbler L. Ian MacDonald to marry Fraser Institute's Tasha Kheiriddin Oct 11 ...

***

Monday, June 16


Bourque 7th in Nascar race @ Mosport ...
Race results ...

***

Friday, May 16


G&M blogger Dan Cook points out Stephane Dion's hypocritical flip-flop on his 'Dion Tax' carbon plan. The plan, unveiled this week and panned widely, is at odds with his earlier carbon tax promise during the Liberal leadership campaign , where he asserted to one and all that "I've always been against it. I will have other ways to get there". Indeed ...
Meanwhile, a Paul Desmarais blogger reveals that Maxime Bernier and his biker chick poupoune Julie Couillard were spotted noshing with Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day (& his wife), of all people, at an Ottawa eatery as recently March 31st, despite Mad Max's assertions the tryst ended months ago ...
And what to make of related media reports this morning that Couillard's dad was convicted in 2001 of running a hydroponic marijuana grow-op. Worse, as recently as 2005, Julie Couillard had a year-long two-pronged 'liaison' and business relationship with a man convicted in connection with a merchandise heist. He is reported to have owed $1 million to a loan shark and an associate of the Hells Angels and he eventually committed suicide last year ...

***

Sunday, April 20


Bourque 16th in Iowa Speedway race ...
Qualifying rained out, Bourque started 41st, passed 25 cars ...

***

Friday, April 18

CUPW BIGWIGS CHOSEN
2008 CUPW 23rd Triennial Convention Unofficial results:

National Office
President: Denis Lemelin defeated Deborah Bourque
1st VP: Gayle Bossenberry defeated Andre Frappier
2nd VP: Lyne Bue defeated Cindy McCallum
3rd VP: George Floresco - acclaimed
4th VP: Donald Lafleur - acclaimed
Secretary Treasurer: George Kuehnbaum
Ntl Grievance Officer: Philippe Arbour defeated John Fehr
Health &Safety: Serge Champoux
Ntl Union Representatives: Cindi Foreman
Cathy Kennedy
Colin McKenzie
Diane Tanguay
Marion Pollock replaced Evert Hoogers (Pls note not all URs are accounted for)

Regional Directors
Atlantic: Jeff Callaghan
QuŽbec: Christian Martel
Metro-MontrŽal: Louis Langlois
Central: Mark Evard
Metro-Toronto: Irwin Nanda
Ontario: Gerry Deveau
Prairie: Gord Fischer
Pacific: John Bail

***

Tuesday, April 15


Canada's top local Anchors invade Ottawa for CTV's Celebration of Local & National News ...
Big A-list crowd expected tonight at Ottawa's Metropolitan Brasserie for CTV bash ...

Bourque expands 2008 racing program ...
Sponsor queries welcomed ...

***

Thursday, March 27


DISSENT ? IGNATIEFF DOTH PROTEST
"The statement directly attributed to me in this morning's La Presse is entirely false. I was in Montreal to raise funds to repay my leadership debt. I have worked tirelessly for our Party and our Leader and will continue to work with our strong Liberal team to ensure we win the next election. No one has the right to call my loyalty into question." - Michael Ignatieff

***

Sunday, February 10


Daytona: Bourque knocked out of race while running 4th ...

***

Wednesday, January 30

UBC 'POLICE INCIDENT' SHOCKER

From UBC Prez Stephen Toope:
"There has been a police incident at the Bio Sciences Building, which is located at the intersection of Main Mall and University Boulevard at the University of British Columbia.

On the advice of the RCMP, the Bio Sciences Building has been locked down. Building occupants have been instructed to stay where they are, to secure the room in which they are located, and to await further instructions from the RCMP.

No person will be permitted to enter or leave the Bio Sciences Building without RCMP authorization.

Out of an abundance of caution, the RCMP is advising that others on campus stay where they are currently located. All campus occupants should be aware of their surroundings and report any suspicious circumstances to the RCMP at 911. Persons who are not on campus are advised to remain away from the campus until further notice.

More here ..."

Stephen J. Toope
President and Vice Chancellor

***

Friday, December 21


Bourque @ Daytona ...

***

Thursday, November 8

Memo from Ray Heard:
"Dear disaffected Liberal friends and acquaintances

I have told you this before. I am saying it again: This guy Dion has to go.

Like failed chief executive officers on Bay Street, he has to fall on his sword to make way for someone -- I favour the reinvented Bob Rae -- who will deliver returns to his stakeholders, the too patient and much too forgiving members of the Liberal Party. If he stays, we will go the way of Kim Campbell's Tories in the next federal election and Harper will get a majority rooted in Quebec as well as Alberta. (If Steve triumphs in Quebec he will devolve Canada out of existence, and Dion will take the fall for allowing this to happen, but that is another story.)

So, smart-ass Heard, where is the evidence to support your renewed demand for the head of Dion? The new bill of particulars includes Dion's outrageous immediate silence in the face of well-documented media disclosures that Liberal MPs in Toronto and in BC have been shamelessly trying to buy the votes of fringe groups by attending memorial services for terrorist "martyrs" -- Tamil Tiger zealots here, and Sikh thugs who shame their honourable creed in BC. Clearly, the Party now holds the facile pop liberal view that yesterday's terrorist is today's freedom fighter.

This is not the first time, of course, that our Leader has been silent in the face of infamy. Who can forget that, at the Montreal convention that elected him, he failed to speak up loud and clear when delegates supporting another top candidate came up to the beautiful Arlene Rae and told her not to vote for Rae because his wife is a Jew. It was then that I expressed the view that a leader who tolerates such blatant evil -- indeed, a hate crime! -- is not my leader.

I can just see the Conservative campaign slogan in the next election: "The Grits support terrorists! Not only did they vote against extending the terrorism act to find the Air India criminals, an expedient move that flouted the expert counsel of Rae, John Manley and Anne McLennan. Now they bow publicly to the images of terrorists." It will be followed by the chorus that the Grits also want to increase the devalued and hated (by everyone expect the economists, who are always wrong) GST.

Little wonder, then, that so many of us in the maligned but nonetheless profitable trade of spin-doctor are insisting to all who will listen that, yes, we are still Liberals -- but strictly provincial ones in the wake of a victory by Dalton McGuinty. To us, it seems that, if Dion hangs in for another two years or so (a truly grim prospect) Dalton can become the first provincial Premier to be reincarnated as PM.

Lemme out of here, and stay tuned!"

***

Sunday, November 4


Gen Rick Hillier's sold-out Military Families Fund Gala, attended by over 750 mess kit'd, black-tie'd, and gown'd swells in the nation's Capital Saturday night, raised a staggering amount of money for military families in need. Funds were raised both by dinner tickets, as well as via live and silent auctions where bidders were able to snatch up A-level NHL and Nascar memorabilia, travel and vacation goodies, concert tix, artworks, even a golf package courtesy ougoing Lib MP Belinda Stronach. Master of ceremonies Rick Mercer, master auctioneer Dave Smith, and fiddler Natalie McMaster performed for the assembled, which included military hero Lew MacKenzie, Chief Government Whip Jay Hill, even Larry The Mayor Guy, as they sipped Canadian wines provided by Dan Aykroyd. The CDS Military Family Fund accepts donations on an ongoing basis, whether online, by mail, or by phone.

More ...

***

Monday, October 15

Heard weighs in on Chretien book
You would expect that bedrock Lib Ray Heard would have an opinion on the new Chretien book.

And, boy, does Heard weigh in. Says Ray,

"The ChrŽtien book is awful -- distinctly, and typically, low-rent. His ghost-writer, whoever he or she is, should be ashamed of participating in a sub-Arctic version of the Big Lie. How dare he suggest that Paul Martin irresponsibly and irresolutely put our troops into the "killing fields! The "killing fields" were in Cambodia and the evil regime of Pol Pot committed genocide in those fields on countless innocent civilians.

In stark contrast, Canada's qualified commitment to fighting terrorism in Afghanistan, a commitment made by a Liberal government and now honoured by Stephen Harper, is a peace-making (not just peace-keeping!) enterprise that bears the stamp of NATO and the UN and is thus, one must presume, in accord with international law.

At least Mulroney wrote his own revisionist stuff! Chretien, who never had an original thought beyond the instinct for seizing the jugular, would have splintered the party even more with this outpouring of venom if his protege, Dion, hadn't already rent it inseperably in two.

Moreover, when Chretien, echoing Et Tu, Brute! (even if he never read Shakespeare in the original) refers to Martin's palace guard as "goons" for daring, at a meeting in a seedy Toronto airport motel, to question how long his tenure should last, he uses a term -- I prefer "thug" to "goon" -- that applies equally to the unrelenting efforts of his own hatchetman, led by that intellectual midget, Eddie Goldenberg, to drive John Turner of office. The pot is again calling the kettle black.

Gimme Mulroney any time!"

***

Wednesday, October 10

Ray Heard: Dalton next Liberal Party of Canada leader ?
Bourque has learned that bedrock Liberal Ray Heard is telling fellow "disaffected Grits" that Ontario Premier "Dalton McGuinty will succeed Stephane Dion, the sub-Arctic idiot savant, as leader of the federal Liberal Party."

This, in a confidential memo (the "Heard Memo") obtained by Bourque where Heard says he feels "qualified to be the first party member to make this bold prediction, since I have been vindicated by recent event, including the Carroll fiasco and the Outremont debacle, for having become the very first Liberal publicly to call for Dion to resign as any pukka Bay Street exec would do if he had failed so miserably after ten months to deliver the promised goods. This call ... was widely echoed, anonymously, by other dissenters."

Why is Ray Heard saying it will be Dalton after Dion?

"Well", says Heard in his stunning memo, "some of my associates in the older reaches of the Party, co-creators all of the Trudeau myth, are saying very privately, while professing undying loyalty to the cock-up prone Dion, that the new, carefully controlled Dalton has just what it takes gracefully to take the reins from Dion after a Tory victory in the next federal election."

Indeed, Heard writes that McGuinty's "victory over John Tory tonight shows he's a winner who can focus, in the Clintonian idiom, on a single winning issue (funding religious schools)".

Heard points to "Don Guy, the partner of Dion pollster Michael Marzolini, he has a brilliant campaign strategist who makes John Tory's ideologocally flexible wizard, John Laschinger look like, well, John Tory when he masterminded Kim Campbell's unprecedented humiliation."

Ouch, them's fightin' words, though it remains unclear if the footloose Marzolini, one of the Party's most insightful backroomers, will cling to Dion's sinking ship !

Heard goes on to note that "Dalton, moreover, is NOT from Toronto. This is a huge asset in a party whose grassroots resent and the fear the self-appointed centre of the Canadian universe. He is not involved in the unseemly conspiring against Dion that is being conducted by the "Michael Ignatieff and Bob Rae camps which, beyond a profound loathing for each other, share the reasonable view that Dion is a dead man walking. Dalton is, to boot, more bilingual: his French, in a party that insists on bilingualism, is a heck of a lot more comprehensible that Dion's English."

Or so the Heard Memo goes.

"Dalton", adds Heard, is "an increasingly vocal protagonist of more power for the provinces, is relatively acceptable to Quebecers because he does not share the federalist -- make that centralist! -- passion Dion is presumed to have inherited from Trudeau by way of ChrŽtien, to whom he owes his success, such as it is, in politics."

Still, Heard offers a caveat about Dalton replacing Dion. Says Heard, "it is that, if Stephen Harper is smart, he will call an election late in the fall to decimate Dion and win just enough seats from the Liberals and Bloc in Quebec for a slight majority. Dalton needs time to prepare a bid that would be a coronation given the dearth of other serious contenders. Dalton steps into the federal arena, then, only if Dion can hang in for another year or so, and this depends on Harper."

Now, there may be other Liberals "who could look like a winner in the post-Dion era", as Heard puts it, noting that "Frank McKenna is making too much money as vice-chair at the resurgent TD bank and enjoying Rosedale parties with the likes of Michael Douglas, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Moses Znaimer (of all people), ever to be tempted to occupy Stornoway."

Ray Heard has been knee-deep in Liberal politics for eons. He has an institutional knowledge base of Liberal tentacles and skeletons. He knows how to connect the dots.

Looking further into the future than the McGuinty era, Heard says he "already sees two contenders. Ruby Dhalla (blessedly from Mississauga, not Toronto), who is quite the most focused Grit on the political talk-shows, has a wide following among Young Liberals on the Internet and shows a rare capacity for intellectual growth, and Dominic LeBlanc, the smart Harvard Law grad and close pal of the Third Man, Justin Trudeau, who seems to have inherited his mother's brain as well as her looks".

There is little doubt that the explosive assertions contained in the so-called "Heard Memo" will cause deep consternation in certain Liberal circles, as well as glimmers of hope for other Liberals who feel an equally deep sense of disenfranchisement.

Developing ...

***

Saturday, September 15


Mutiny on the Good Ship Liberal ?
"Woe is me" would pretty much sum up embattled leader Stephane Dion's tenure atop Canada's natural governing party. An unlikely political boss with a professorial affectation, Dion's post-leadership convention honeymoon lasted barely hours before the wheels began to fall off the bandwagon, such as it was.

To be fair, Dion has faced a variety of insurmountable obstacles since Day One on the job. For starters, Dion's political acumen never overcame his leadership rivals claims that as a Cabinet Minister, he "just couldn't get the job done", something the Conservatives were quick to parrot to his constant frustration.

But the worst elements of Dion's tenure were not amplified to the public by MPs from other parties. Instead, they were whispered internally by fellow Liberals working their disruptive magic for those who would be king, the disgruntled leadership also-rans all too anxious to see Dion flushed from the leader's office, whether by an electoral loss or a mere discharge of self-confidence that might lead to an abandoning of duties.

And in such an unhealthy political diaspora, subterfuge, ego, and ambition align to corrode status quo, to malign benevolence, and to usurp authority. As one very senior Liberal MP told Liberal candidate Bourque back in 1992, a Liberal politician's worst enemies are not in the other parties, they are your colleagues within the Liberal Party.

Today's schism predates the recent leadership convention. The splits within the Liberal party harken back to the Trudeau/Turner era, followed by myriad Turner/Chretien convolutions, subsequented by the Chretien/Martin dichotomy, and now buffeted by the tenuous Ignatieff/Rae/Dion fooferaws. Personal tiffs abound, as do vendettas, hurt feelings, and un-assuaged arrogance.

This is the world that Stephane Dion has tapped into, this is the dilemma he struggles with, this is what fuels what many senior Liberals increasingly feel is the beginning of the end of Stephane Dion as Liberal leader.

The fact that life may go from bad to worse for Dion should his party lose, as predicted, all 3 imminent by-elections can only expand internal resentment of his leadership, and whatever resulting discomfort he may be subjected to.

Developing ...

***

Sunday, August 5


RACE FANS LAP UP NASCAR
Bourque qualifies 17th, finishes 12th @ Montreal ...

***

Monday, July 23


Prime Minister Stephen Harper is looking at delaying Ontario by-elections to avoid a conflict with the upcoming Ontario provincial poll-vault ... Greenie Liz May denies internal party turmoil and has yet to pronounce on the devastating effects of China's huge climate-changing dust plumes ... And Bourque hears that Liberal leader Stephane Dion, who had to cut short a recent Toronto schmoozer, said to be 'very weak' and suffering from 'severe exhaustion' ...

***

Wednesday, July 18

Heard's Shot Across Dion's Bow
Bourque has received a copy of an email sent to a number of people by longtime top Liberal insider Ray Heard. In it, Heard blasts Liberal leader Stephane Dion's decision to "parachute an academic who was a journalist at Le Devoir into Outremont because he is a fellow francophone Quebecker".

According to the Toronto-based Heard, "this suggests Dion has one standard for Quebec and another one for Ontario ... because, in the spring, I urged Dion and Rae to see to it that Marva Wisdom, who happens to be an Afro-Canadian and a distinguished scholar, should be named by the Leader as the candidate in Guelph. After all, she was for three years Chair of the party's Policy Commission and chaired the Platform Committees in the last two elections. Our appeal was spurned, yet another guy in a suit won the nomination to succeed Brenda Chamberlain. That vote was conveniently held after many of Marva's supporters at Guelph University had gone home. This act of betrayal caused Charlie Coffey, a former RBC vice-chair and long-time Liberal, to say he wanted to tear up his membership card in disgust. Marva, who supported Ken Dryden in the leadership stakes, remains eminently qualified to get an uncontested nomination. But she is a beautiful, brainy black women from Ontario, not a white male from Quebec, so we can forget that."

***

Sunday, June 10


Goodale Looks Ahead, Preps Post-Dion Leadership Bid
Ralphie is to summer in Jonquiere, learn French, nibble poutine & gulp Maudite. The elected lifer suddenly needs to learn French ? To rep Sask riding by remote-control ? Has Dion ok'd ?

***

Thursday, May 31


PEI's Ghiz voted illegally
"In October 1995, Mr. Ghiz was a student at Bishop's University in Lennoxville, Quebec. He was part of 380 students who were the subject of a complaint by the YES Committee because they were illegally inscribed onto the referendum's electoral list. On the day of the referendum, a member of the YES committee heard Ghiz swear that he was a resident of Quebec, when in fact his true residence was in Charlottetown. At that time, his father was Premier of PEI ..." More: '95 referendum rewind ...

***

Wednesday, May 30


"Le tout" Queen's Park and Bay Street today at Toronto's Economic Club for lunch with California Governator Arnold Schwarzenegger. Major bank honchos, leading political figures, top pollsters and lobbyists, myriad movers and shakers, not to mention a few lucky lesser mortals, all to rub shoulders and hear what the Hollywood Kennedy-in-law has to say ... Top Liberal oligarch Mark Marissen, still scratching his head, wondering who the heck was pinging him on his Blackberry as he jetted business class to Ottawa from Vancouver earlier this month ... PEI potato patch folks wonder if defeated Premier Pat Binns erred in not using ad master Bob Brennan, the man behind successful Tory romps in '96, Y2K, and '03 ... Quebec Premier Jean Charest, once dubbed "Captain Canada", lately ensconsed between rock and hard place, now pondering July election if budget defeated ... Alberta Premier Ed Stelmach, coming to grips with recent poll showing popularity dip ... Green Party leader Elizabeth May has opened a campaign office in Central Nova ... And condolences to the friends and family of longtime CBC News producer Danny Malanchuk, dead from complications during heart surgery ...

***

Monday, May 28


It is is election day in PEI where a large voter-turnout is the norm. A close finish is expected ...

Are aboriginal & associated activist groups planning a blockade and/or coordinated series of traffic disruptions at the BC Ferry Services Tsawwassen Causeway over the Canada Day long weekend (Fri-Sun. 29/June-01/July) ? One wonders if Ferry Workers will cross any such blockade, which would risk shutting down the bulk of ferry operations in BC over that three day period. BC Liberals are pondering the prospect of a head-to-head Oka-style confrontation ...

The Ottawa Senators, now flying high, should do well to remember "Mayor Jim", their biggest booster when the franchise was just a twinkle in Bruce Firestone's eye ...

And "get well soon" wishes out to well-known Ottawa bon-vivant and longtime Air Canada PR genius Hugh Riopelle, recovering from a stroke suffered over the weekend while golfing at Ottawa's Hunt Club, where he's been a member for 50 years ...

***

Thursday, May 10


World/Hell/Handbasket Dept: Urgent CBC Memo
"To all Toronto Staff: Hey CBCers, Sean Cullen is on The Gill Deacon Show this morning, and they need an audience--right now! Seriously. Literally. So if you'd like to see Mr. Cullen, head up, down or over to their studio on the sixth floor ASAP (right now, it's 10:10 a.m.), between the orange and green elevators." (No confirmation this was unpaid leave for all who responded)

***

Wednesday, May 9

RCMP nabs Environment Canada staffer
So reads a release: "Early this morning, the Ottawa RCMP arrested a male employee from Environment Canada for Breach of Trust under the Criminal Code for leaking secret draft legislation. On April 17, the RCMP Commercial Crime Section received a complaint from Environment CanadaÕs security department that a draft secret copy of "Climate Change Section of the Eco-Action Plan" had been released publicly. "An employee who violates the terms of their workplace security clearance, including the release of secret documents, may be subjected to legal consequences, including criminal charges," says Supt. Stan Burke, Officer in Charge, Financial Integrity, "A" Division. The matter remains under investigation.

***

Tuesday, April 17


Dump Dion Plot ... Latest Poll #'s ... Impeach Cheney ... & NHL Habs For Sale ?
The Dump Dion forces have finally shown their hand. In this latest salvo in the Liberal Party feud, bedrock Liberal strategist Ray Heard has unleashed a scathing missive (see below) against sundry targets, both within the Liberal party and in political media circles. In his email, a copy of which was obtained by Bourque, Mr. Heard says he speaks "for many other Liberals who are already involved in the necessary, if otherwise covert, process of dumping Dion as soon as he loses the next election". He goes on to accuse Stephane Dion of being an Emperor without clothes, lambaste "egomaniac" Maclean's scribbler Paul Wells, and bait his "enemy", the superstar Dion blogger Jason Cherniak ...

Decima's latest shows the Tories @ 34%, the Libs @ 31%, the NDP @ 15%, the Greens @ 11%, and the BQ @ 7% ...

It's reached the boiling point. Articles of Impeachment are to be filed on US VP Dick Cheney ...

Two PC MLA's in New Brunswick crossed the floor to sit with the new Shawn Graham Liberal government this morning. Joan McAlpine and her husband Wally Stiles were both elected for the first time in 1999. Joan served in Bernard Lord's cabinet for her entire tenure in government. They both represent Moncton area ridings where the Liberals were all but shut out in the provincial election. Watch for Joan to be named to cabinet soon ...

The Old Port of Montreal Corp has a few new faces on the Board, notably new Chairman Bernard Roy, the indefatiguable Mulroney-era PMOer, and the lithe and lovely Tasha Kheiriddin, author, raconteur, ex-Avi Lewis cable TV producer ...

Word is that a female Quebec teacher is among the victims of yesterday's grisly Virginia Tech shooting ...

Red Bull, yes, that ubiquitous energy drink owned by the Austrian Dietrich Mateschitz, is said to be interested in buying the NHL Montreal Canadiens from the American George Gillet ...

And, ouch, built tough ? Ford has recalled 500,000 vehicles ...

--

This just in from Ray Heard ...

"From Ray Heard to Jason Cherniak, whoever you are
-- another chapter in the Dump Dion saga

Re your two emails today and your Blog entry about your not-so-humble servant: Stay tuned! Ê

This is only beginning of theÊend -- and I love it, because this Emperor has no clothes. Any Liberal Leader who does not know who Peter C. Newman is, isÊ clearly not a student of the eras of Pearson and Trudeau -- or The Dief -- whose many failures and occasional triumphs are object lessons to anyone who presumes to become our chief magistrate. Ê

If my emails and phone calls are any yardstick,ÊÊI speak for many other Liberals who are already involved in theÊnecessary, if otherwiseÊcovert, process of dumping Dion as soon as he loses the next election. Given his credentials in so tirelessly plotting against Chretien for a decade, instead of loving him to his political death, Scott Reid should appreciate this looming debacle, where history repeats itself as farce.ÊÊÊ Ê

As for Paul Wells:ÊÊHe is an egomaniac. It is an anatomical fact that hisÊhuge, swollenÊhead is in inverse proportion to his body as well as his brain. (I suspect that Wells, like Joe Clark, cannot swim due to the heaviness of his head, but, as usual, I digress.) Wells's main topic, after all,Êis himself.Ê Hence, there are more personal pronouns in his copy than verbs. But, at least, he has the distinction of being the only MacLean's columnist who is not shamelessly shilling (or is that shrilling?) Êfor Conrad, who will be acquitted notwithstanding their sucky ass-creeping. Ê

So, young Mr. Cherniak, instead of the aforesaid Mr. Wells (clearly no relation to H.G.!) gimme Simpson, Coyne, Corcoran, FrancisÊand Wente any day -- throwbacks toÊthe era when columnists wrote about great public issues rather than what they had for breakfast. Ê

Who, anyway,Êreally gives a flying fig about what Wells thinks of Scott Reid, or Ray Heard, for that matter?Ê Reid and are history and I am grateful for that having spent two miserable years in Ottawa serving John Turner.Ê But the difference between Reid and me is that he and his thuggish comrades brought Paul Martin from the (inherited) status of majority PM to a total loser, whereas I, after signing on in 1987,Êhelped Turner to double our seat number in the 1988 election, thus giving ChrŽtien, despite his plotting against JNT,Êa solid platform for further growth,Êan easy task given the ineptness of Kim Campbell.Ê Ê

Finally, if you were a smarter spin-doctor, Jason (the namesakeÊof that B movie axe-man) you would abide by the basic rule of flackery: never, ever, promote your antagonists by quoting them, because all you do is draw attention to their heretical views!Ê Your idol, Mr. Dion, can thus thank you for keeping this issue alive by acknowledging myÊexistence on your Blog.Ê Please keep up the good work in the cause of the enemy. To succeed, we need enemies like you. Ê

Cheers -- and welcome onÊa long ride! Ê

Ray Heard." Ê

***

Monday, April 16


Gumdrops
Superstar Dion blogger Jason Cherniak is calling on "Nincompoop" Ray Heard, the senior Liberal strategist who shocked the political world this weekend by belling the cat about a frothing family feud over Stephane Dion's dubious leadership qualities, to quit the Liberal Party ...

Longtime marijuana advocate Marc-Boris St-Maurice is abandoning his quest to run as a Liberal party candidate in the thanklessly separatist riding of Laurier-St-Marie in urban Montreal. Word is he might have been pushed out by pro-Dion operatives worried about stirring up media interest in the party's position on the abolition of marijuana laws ...

and Bourque has heard there is a move afoot in the rural Nova Scotia riding of Central Nova by disenfranchised Liberals to run a so-called "independent" Liberal candidacy against the Dion-May cabal. On the one hand that would mean another non-Mackay name on the ballot to draw votes away from Green party leader Liz May. On the other hand, it means a likely reduction in the number of potential volunteers from Liberal ranks who might otherwise find themselves working the trenches for Ms. May during the upcoming election. Developing ...

***

Sunday, April 15


Liberal Party feud breaks open ...
Yesterday, Bourque was first to reveal a Liberal family feud between senior party strategists Ray Heard and Scott Reid over the relative value of Citoyen Dion's leadership and whether or not it was time to pull the plug on Dion for the good of the party (see below).

Today, Bourque has learned that the two have been asked to square off on cable TV in a verbal joust to be hosted by Parliament Hill longtimer Mike Duffy.

It's not quite a "Thrilla in Manilla", but the reverberations of this open wound point to a deep gash within the country's so-called natural governing party. Call it a continental divide, if you will, a test of wills still simmering since last year's inconclusive leadership race foisted an unprepapred third-tier Chretien-era Cabinet minister to the top of an unsuspecting and unexpecting tribal alliance of Liberals still licking their wounds over their recent loss at the polls.

The Dion leadership is now a big question mark within the party.

"Fact is, many senior Grits are absolutely appalled but afraid to speak out", acknowledged Mr. Heard, in an email to this scribbler.

As one prominent Liberal blogger put it to Bourque in an email last night, "it's like Chance the gardener from the movie Being There has come to life and is now running the party". Or so it would seem.

This latest public display of (dis)affection is the talk of the weekend in Liberal circles and promises deeper ramifications in the weeks to come.

Now, Bourque has obtained a copy of an email sent by Ray Heard to a couple of reporters less than 48 hours ago, in which he refers to the hapless Dion-May deal as a "devil's pact" and where he offers his views "on the record":

"I say this on the record. Some Liberals feel today Mr. Dion should be forced to quit as leader. His deal with Elizabeth May, a social reactionary, is the very last straw. It denigrates the tradition that the Liberals are a national party. Though he was the architect of the Clarity Act, Dion is cynically kowtowing to the decentralists in Quebec; he does not, like his predecessors, speak up for Canada any more.. He refused to support extending the terrorism provisions Bob Rae said were needed to find the Air India terrorists. He is fudging the commitment to fight terrorists in Afghanistan his own government made. He is surrounded by a bunch of control-freaks who will not accept the offers of veteran strategists, who date back to Trudeau, to help with policy. Both Michael Ignatieff and Bob Rae are eminently qualified to succeed him before the next election and I cannot fault their supporters for plotting to dump him before its too late." - Ray Heard

And so, yes, a fractured Liberal Party is set to (not so) quietly unravel.

***

Saturday, April 14

From Heard to Reid ... and from Reid to Heard ...

To Scott Reid
"Your performance in defending that idiot savant, Stephane Dion, on the Duffy show yesterday confirms beyond question you are the sub-Arctic Comical Ali of the Liberal Party. Defending the indefensible has become your forte in a crowded field of amateur Liberal spin-doctors. Your fractured rhetoric underscores that your background before joining Paul Martin was strictly municipal.

However, you were dead on when you called me a "whiner" because, perhaps like Thersites in The Iliad, I have always spoken out when there is time to avoid disaster.

Thus, I publicly warned Paul Martin that you and the other thugs in his entourage would take him right down the tube if he didn't dump you during his long quest to topple ChrŽtien. My counsel was to love ChrŽtien to death to get him to depart gracefully. When I did this, you lectured me in an endless email. In a career that includes covering the White House, editing a metropolitan daily and running a network news division, I have never been addressed in such juvenile terms.

Thus, at Royal Bank, I advised Cleghorn and Barrett their merger would be dead on arrival unless they gave notice of their intentions to Chretrien and Martin.

Thus, covering LBJ and Nixon, inspired by I.F. Stone, I saw a disaster pending in Viet Nam.

So now the battle is joined, Reid. I love a fight, whether physical or verbal, as you shall learn."

Ray Heard

To Ray Heard
Thank you for the note Mr Heard.

When appearing in media on behalf of the Liberal Party, I take the position that I should offer a vigorous defence of the Liberal Party and its Leader. And I'm proud to have that opportunity because I believe strongly in the Liberal Party of Canada.

I make no claim to perfection. And I've never reacted to any of the public criticisms you've leveled against me personally. In spite of the fact that we've never met or spoken I felt you had every right to critique my conduct while I worked for Mr Martin.

Yesterday, I was asked for my opinion on your call to unseat our leader before the next election. I gave my opinion and I stand by it.

Cheers
SR

***

Thursday, April 5

OTTAWA GALA 2007 presented by Telus and Hot 89.9

Experience the legend, be seduced by the luxury.

It will be tuxedos and stilettos, as over 1000 of OttawaÕs most debonair men and dangerous women meet for an evening of classic intrigue, live entertainment, gourmet hors dÕoeuvres, and of course... martinis.

The Ottawa Gala is one of the most popular black tie optional events of the year; donÕt wait to get your tickets. Complete your mission and show you care by helping raise money for local children-at-risk initiatives.

Saturday, April 14, 2007 8 pm to 2 am
Government Conference Centre, 2 Rideau St.
Black tie optional Ð chic mandatory.

General Ticket Ð $50 VIP Top Secret Clearance Ð $100 (Limited availability!)

For more information or tickets visit: www.ottawagala.com

***

Sunday, April 1


Chretien: The Comeback Kid ?
With the Liberal Party trailing the governing Conservative Party by a wide margin in recent polls, rumours of fact and facts of rumour have been percolating to the extent that disgruntled Liberal insiders, both pro-Dion and supporters of his leadership opponents, have been exchanging knowing glances, innuendo'd emails, and philandering phone calls, all to the effect that time has come to seek out a strong consensus-building Liberal with the kind of hands-on leadership qualities that can handle the challenge that befits a man who has won three successive majority elections: Jean Chretien.

The man is said to be ready and waiting for the call.

His longtime praetorian guard, pollsters, and spin-meisters are all girding for battle. "Pierre, the scenario is simple", confided a Toronto-based politico well-known to late-afternoon TV watchers, "one way or another, the odds are stacked against Stephane. He'll go down in the election and the call will immediately go out for Chretien to be drafted into service."

Meanwhile, journalist Michel Vastel is reporting on his website that Chretien has just completed his 700 page autobiography, set for imminent publication. Developing.

--

Monaco-based tech company to buy Bourque ?

***

Saturday, March 10

crop: lib 33% pq 29% adq 26%
Heard @ Hy's

***

Wednesday, Feb 28

Nascar: Bourque will race @ Montreal !
Bourque talks racing ...

***

Saturday, February 17

Bourque talks racing with Norris McDonald ...

***

Monday, February 12

Adscam & Basi
Two words that send shivers down the spine of certain high-level federal and Ontario Grits, particularly the pompous and the bombastic. Indeed, with ongoing RCMP investigations and upcoming criminal trials on both fronts, many high-flying Liberals are thinking twice about potential ramifications as takedown artists and gluttons for punishment seek a combo plate of red herrings and fall guys to usurp national media attention from past mis-deeds and forthcoming public indignations. Indeed, a perfect storm of Liberal horrors is on the horizon. As a longtime Liberal, one shudders in disgust.

***

Sunday, February 11

*** A Bourque Exclusive ***

Are Canadians driving away from Kyoto ?
by Charles Adler

If you want to examine the strength of someone's so called convictions, pay attention to their words. But pay very close attention to their deeds. Ottawa Citizen columnist Randall Denley really gets it when he writes you are what you drive. Pointing out that while the polls say we Canadians are concerned aobut the environment, our actions reveal we really aren't prepared to make serious sacrifices. Very few it would seem are even prepared to make small sacrifices.

Let's take this thought straight to the Canadian highway. Have you noticed the amount of gas guzzlers?

How can you not when they are as large as Chevy Silverados and Ford 1-50's. Denley points out those two models were the top two selling vehicles in Canada in 2006. At this point you can stop reading, if you choose to. No other point being made by Denley or yours truly or anyone else can possibly punctuate the point better than the sight of the monster SUV and the more traditional pick up truck, or as they say in my neck of the woods, the half ton.

While tonnes of trees are being chopped down to create the pulp, to create the paper to distribute the story that we Canadians really really really care about the environment, the pieces of paper with our signatures on them, our cheques, are being written to buy vehicles like the one I drive. I call it my 500 horsepower Kyoto Anti-Christ.

Denley is one of a growing number of Canadians who demands that we take a look in the mirror.

"Be honest. When you're in the new car showroom, is your main concern how many kilograms of carbon dioxide that shiny new vehicle will emit, or how many horsepower it has? And what about all those must-have features? Even when we choose cars that are relatively good on gas, we impair that performance by adding automatic transmissions, power seats and air conditioning. Running an air conditioner can increase fuel consumption by 20 per cent in city driving."

Never mind the political polls folks. Follow the consumer polls. They are the ones that force us to put our money where our mouths are. As Denley points out, when car shoppers are asked to say what it is they are looking for in a vehicle, environmental friendliness is the highest priority with 2.2 percent of them.

In a recent interview I did with the boss at Decima research, I asked the question, What percentage of voters really think of the envronment as their number one issue. The answer was nineteen percent. That means fewer than one in five. How does that small ratio get turned into the story that it is the country's most important issue.

I will leave that for the catalytic spinners among us.

Charles Adler is the host of Adler on Line on the Corus Radio Network
Listen to Adler's interview with Mark Holland by logging on to CharlesAdler.Com
Contact him through his website or email him at adleronline@gmail.com

***

Saturday, February 10

*** A Bourque Exclusive ***


by Charles Adler

"The Conservatives are back on track." This bold new assertion is not coming from a Harper cabinet minister, a right wing tv talking head or a blogging tory. The words flow effortlessly from James Travers, the National columnist of the Toronto Star.

The Conservatives may have been floundering in the summer and fall when their eye was on the foreign policy ball. The airlift of Canadian passport holders in Lebanon, the Conservative policies in Afghanistand and the middle east kept Harper away from his strengths.

But these days, the Star columnist thinks that the PM is back on his game. His most recent cabinet shuffle was well done, as was his most recent speech at the Canadian club, a mini throne speech. But what about those Tory attack ads which received prominence during the super bowl?

Travers thinks the controversial ads that the Tories have been running, worked on damaging Dion in the public eye. Regardless of how many social scientists tell you that negative ads don't work and regardless of how many pollsters tell you that Canadians saw the ads as unfair, there is a truism in life that is irrevocable. Life isn't fair. Politics isn't fair, and so voters don't expect fair.

And so is there is no national hissy fit over the ad. What there is a growing perception that Dion is weak.

It didn't take a lot of cattleprodding on my part to get Travers to cough up why the ads scorched the Liberal leader's thin layer of skin. "Those ads worked because the Liberals I talked to think they worked," said Travers.

You can look at the recent polls, Leger and S.E.S and conclude that the Tories are on a roll. In the key battleground province of Ontario, the Tory lead over the Liberals is sizeable. If an election were held today, the Liberals would likely lose more ground to the Tories in Canada's largest province.

While the environment may be an issue that Stephane Dion thinks of as his winning pony, his thinking may be addled. But it may be turning the leader into on trick pony, in the eyes of his own caucus.

Another Toronto Star scribe, Susand Delacourt points out in her Saturday column that Liberal caucus members are now muttering about Dion's single minded focus on Kyoto. They fear it may not be enough to get them back to what they think of as their rightful place in Canadian society, government.

Travers in his interview with me revealed the dirty little niggling secret that has been festering in the minds of all those grits who held their noses while voting for Dion. "Liberals at the Montreal convention knew that despite the green scarves, Dion did not have a good record as environment minister. He did nothing on the environment when he was minister and Liberals knew that would always make him vulnerable," Travers said.

If Dion tries to make environment the voting issue, which he undoubtedly will, are the Liberals guaranteed gains at the ballot box? The nightmare scenario for them is that Dion is handing the NDP and GREENS an issue on a platter. Liberal votes in Ontario may very well bleed into the Green and NDP camps. A split on the centre left leaves only one clear winner.

In the end, Stephane Dion's Green Scarf politics may turn out to be the most boneheaded strategy since Paul Martin decided to go on his Adscam apology tour. In some ways the environment issue may have peaked anyway. While people were getting out the golf clubs in Ottawa and Toronto back in December, these days they are back to winter as usual. Environment Canada will likely record February of 2007 as one of the coldest on record.

There is no irony like political irony. Stephane Dion's green scarf may be suffocating Liberal chances of returning to power any time soon.

Charles Adler is the host of Adler on Line on the Corus Radio Network
Listen to Adler's interview with Mark Holland by logging on to CharlesAdler.Com
Contact him through his website or email him at adleronline@gmail.com

***

Thursday, February 8

*** A Bourque Exclusive ***

Holland the Second Coming Of Nunziata
by Charles Adler

Mark Holland has been considered a rising star in the Liberal ranks. He is getting nearly as much face time as his leader.

Unlike his leader who is more savvy than many of his critics believe him to be, Mark Holland is following in the footsteps of the ratpackers who came before him. Some in the Toronto area see him as the second coming of John Nunziata.

If you are at this point asking John Who than you get the point.

Holland is riding the Kyoto horse into as many confrontations with Alberta as possible. He tells me he wants to cap oil sands growth and then goes on and claims that what he said has been distorted.

He doesn't offer a flat denial to Dave Rutherford when my Corus Radio colleague in Calgary asks him an honest question, "Would a Liberal government consider nationalizing Alberta Energy industries?"

Now, Holland may think, and his leader who refuses to put the neoratpacker in the dog house may agree, that stoking a Canada vs Alberta war is a strategy for victory in the coming election. While this is politics at its worst, and certainly has none of the feel good kumbaya strains that the Liberals were playing at their most recent convention, Canadians may get suckered into thinking that Alberta is a dragon that needs to slain by the Liberals.

Adscam is what took the Liberals down. Kyotoscam may return them to power.

It's up to Canadian media hold the Liberals feet to the fire and keep asking Mark Holland, Stephane Dion and other Liberals the question, "What price do you want Canadians to pay to support the Kyoto ideology?"

So far the popcorn responses that Holland and other Liberals put out contain empty kernels. The typical response is that whatever price we pay now is a very small one compared to what we will pay if we do nothing.

Any voter who falls for that kind of pitch will deserve a return of the scam artists.

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Tuesday, February 6

Lib MP Stephen Owen will not run again ...
Lib MP: Peter Mackay blew $45K on Challenger flight to Rome ...

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Sunday, February 4

A Bourque Exclusive

LIB MP HOLLAND: "THERE WILL BE CONSEQUENCES"
When will the Mainstream Media start covering the Liberal Agenda?
by Charles Adler

As I apply my ink stained fingers to the trusty keyboard, it's been more than 72 hours since Mark Holland, the Liberal Natural Resources critic, belched out the most threatening words I have heard in a political conversation in years.

But for some reason the Mainstream Media has seen them not worthy of attention.

Pierre Bourque of the Bourque Newswatch asked me to scribble my thoughts on the interview with the Liberal MP which contained serious threats to the Western Canadian economy all in the name of respecting Kyoto.

When I asked Holland whether a Liberal government under Stephane Dion would shut down or limit oil sands production if necessary to meet Kyoto targets, his response was, "Exactly." He then went on to say "I think what you are going to see is we're going to say you cannot exploit that resource, basically go in there and pump it out as fast as you can to give it to the Americans and sell out our national interests and blow apart our emissions targets."

I want to give credit where credit is due. Lorne Gunter of the Edmonton Journal in his Sunday Feb 4 column did write about this. But is Lorne Gunter in the only mainstream journalist/columnist in the country who thinks this is newsworthy? Is he the only one who understands what it would mean to the economy of Western Canada and ultimately the entire national economy to tell the energy producers to STOP developing the oilsands, to just tell the guys with the dozers to take their "filthy work ethic" to the unemployment line. Is Gunter the only one who understands the message Stephan Dion's government would send to the capital markets about the unworthiness of investing in the Canadian Energy Industry? Is Gunter the only one who gets how this would level a frontal assault on the Toronto Stock Exchange where so much of what we call growth is dependent on a healthy Oil patch? Is Gunter the only one who gets that this would create an attack on our dollar?

Now perhaps the mainstream media feels that this is not a good time to second guess the fantasies of the Opposition Natural Resources critic. After all Dion and his crew are supposedly on the right side of the Kyoto angels. Perhaps waving a red flag at Alberta is considered the right thing to do in Western Canada. Why dwell on the obvious cause of CO2 emissions in Ontario and Quebec, the fact that half the population of the country, lives, works and drives there?

It's much easier for Liberals to demagogue the issue and pretend that it is ALBERTA energy that embarasses Canada in the hallowed shrine of Kyoto. Perhaps one ought to stop giving the mainstream media excuses for ignoring Mark Hollands sourgas? Maybe it's the oldest reason in the hills. Holland is to the left of the Canadian centre. Does anyone doubt that if a member of Harper's gang were to say something that came right out of rightfield that might be embraassing to the leadership that it would find itself planted firmly on the front pages as well as the teleprompters of Mansbridge, Robertson and Newman?

Warren Kinsella, who was interviewed on Adler on Line after Mark Holland offered his emissions, said he coudln't believe what Holland was saying and thought the Liberal brain trust would immediately disown this stuff.

But they haven't.

Perhaps it is because if the mainstream media don't seize on an event, the Liberal mandarins have no reason to think it ever really happened. Kinsella said that the Liberals need to be reminded that it was a Liberal Government after having reviewed environmental impact studies that approved the initial exploration of the oil sands in 1967 and that successive Liberal governments went on to approve the expansion of that exploration not once, but twice in 1978 and again in 1983.

A day after Mark Holland's threatening remarks, he appeared on my Corus colleague Dave Rutherford's program and was asked whether a Dion government would consdier nationalizing oil companies if they didn't meet Kyoto standards. Holland replied, "If they refuse to work with us....there will be consequences."

On the same day Holland fired this new shot not across but into the bow of Alberta, the former premier of the province, Ralph Klein told my radio audience, "I have a message for the honourable member from Ajax Pickering. Stay out of our business." Klein may no longer have political power. But nobody should doubt that if the Dion-Holland Liberals plan to put a clamp on the continued growth of the Alberta economy, the price to pay for all of us will be enormous.

At the moment, we need to ask the question, "What price are we paying for the Mainstream Media's cold blooded decision to ignore the Liberal agenda."

Charles Adler is the host of Adler on Line on the Corus Radio Network
Listen to Adler's interview with Mark Holland by logging on to www.charlesadler.com
Contact him through his website or email him at adleronline@gmail.com

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Saturday, February 3

What do these three have in common ?
Sarkozy, Dion, Royal. Three politicians, three aspirants to high political office, three headed to imminent elections, three Citizens of France, three members of the European Union. Remarkably, one of them can vote for one of the others, though the others cannot vote for that one. While one has said he would renounce his French citizenship, he has yet to do so, and insiders suggest he will likely refuse to do so, underlying a primary conflict of interest, this despite every evidence that Canadians are in no rush to have a Citizen of France as their next Prime Minister. It remains unclear who Dion favours in the French Presidential elections, or whether he will refuse to cast his vote at the French Embassy, conveniently located next door to 24 Sussex Drive, a duty of every French citizen and a right he continues to enjoy, though no less than Conrad Black suggests today that he favours Nicolas Sarkozy over Segolene Royal to save Europe from its "torpid dyspepia". What do you think Dion should do ? ....

Meanwhile, La Presse, a Montreal newspaper, is reporting that Quebec Premier Jean Charest is ready to call a provincial election at the end of this month ...

And a new poll shows a tight race in Ontario where John Tory's Tories (34%) and Dalton McGuinty's Liberals (33%) are deadlocked, suggesting a potential minority government. The NDP, meanwhile, trail with balance of power at 19% ...

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Friday, February 2


Senior Dion Libs are telling Bourque that the MP Mark Holland's shocking comments about the Party's secret plans to socialize Alberta's oil sands industry have caused the Party significant negative impact in the West at a time when the Liberals are desperate to build support for their cause across the land. Indeed, Holland was said to have spent a significant part of the day today cobbling together some semblance of a rationale to soothe over the scar left by his iambic utterings emitted on an open-line radio show yesterday, the gist of which was re-hashed by Charles Adler in an exclusive text for Bourque last night. Add to that one Dion kool-aid drinker, who noted by email, "Pierre, it's one thing for Stephane to unleash our pit bulls, it's another for the mutt to tripod a squirt on Alberta". According to another source inside OLO, there's a small chance Holland may be demoted from his current critic's gig. One wonders why ...

Summa poohbah Tracey Hubley was seen dancing a jig today for reasons best left to sidebars at Hy's ...

The RCMP is considering an inquiry into competitive practices by the oil industy at the refinery level, rather than at the retail pumps level, the traditional red herring for government competition probes that tend to lead to benign findings ...

and an email from a top Liberal blogger tonight, a mea culpa of sorts, and an admission. Said the blogger, "dammit, Bourque, I spent the better part of last month condemning you, but I confess, I am hopelessly addicted to you. I crawl your site multiple times daily like ants at a picnic. God Bless you, Pierre, for all that you do. You really are the standard we all aspire to." Amen, humbly.

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Thursday, February 1

A Bourque Exclusive

LIB MP HOLLAND GOES NUCLEAR ON KYOTO - by Charles Adler
After several hours of hot Kyoto air in the House of Commons this week, one is left to wonder what specifically a Liberal government under Stephane Dion would do if Canadians give him the keys to kingdom.

If Ajax Pickering MP Mark Holland was telling the truth today on Adler on Line, Canadians ought to be very frightened. When I pressed Holland to get beyond the plattitudes about how sincere Mr Dion is about his love of the environment, the Liberal MP blew my audience away. His rhetoric indicated that a Dion government would get into the face of Canada's energy producers.

Little doubt was left in the mind of observers that the Holland/Dion strategy was to be as confrontational as possible with Alberta voters and their provincial government.

Holland said a Liberal government would manage Alberta resources responsibly. He said, "We need to stabilize the oils sands. We are not going to allow companies to exploit that resource, to pump it out as fast as you can and give it to the Americans and blow out our emissions targets."

When I confronted Mr. Holland about serious job losses that would surely be the result of this kind of federal government policy, he talked about a British study that said short term pain was needed in the interests of dealing with climate change. This was necessary, said Mr. Holland, to prevent longer term economic pain.

Is this the real agenda of sustainable development that Stephane Dion has been talking about? The voters in the coming months leading up to an election campaign need to ask themselves four questions.

1) Do they want the federal government to impose its will on Canada's energy producers and the provincial government of Alberta.

2) Do they think the capital markets in Alberta could survive an all out assault on them by the federal government, one which would dwarf the Liberal Natioanal Energy Program a generation ago.

3) Do they think the people of Alberta will take this sitting down. Or will many of them rise up and insist that their govenrment roll out a Quebec style referendum?

4) After years of listening to the Liberals talking about Tory hidden agendas, has Mr Holland given us an insight into the hidden Liberal agenda?

I expect Mr. Dion and his mouth pieces to say that Mark Holland was not speaking the Liberal opposition when he dropped the Liberal Kyoto bomb on Adler on Line. But that shoudn't allow any of us who want this country to stay united to let our guard down. The Liberals have talked a good game on National Unity. But it seems every time there is a close call on this country being dismembered, a Liberal seems to be sitting in the prime minister's office. Canada's economy is a tower of strength right now. We can only hope that it continues to be sustainable if and when voters take a leap into the darkness with Dion.

Charles Adler is the host of Adler on Line on the Corus Radio Network
Listen to Adler's interview with Mark Holland by logging on to www.charlesadler.com
Contact him through his website or email him at

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Bourque has learned that CPAC has sent the Conservative Party a 'cease and desist' letter regarding the use of video poking fun at Liberal leader Stephane Dion in current advertising ... Bloc & Tory MPs were seen cozying up to outbound Lib MP Jean Lapierre at his Ottawa farewell party Wednesday evening. It seems the soon-to-be-again Quebec media personality has more gravitas than he ever did as an MP ... And what ever do Rahim and Helena talk about at night when the lights go out ?

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Thursday, January 25

Leger: Con 35% Lib 32% Ndp 13% Grn 9%
Decima: Lib 33% Con 32% Ndp 13% Grn 9%

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Wednesday, January 17

Gregg: Lib 35% Con 31% Ndp 15% Bq 11% Grn 8%

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Tuesday, January 16

May election in Quebec ?

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Sunday, January 14


Adler: It's my kind of Canada - A Bourque Exclusive
"Why do you bother living there?" It's a question that I get pestered with time and time and time again. In the nineties when I lived in Tampa Florida, nobody asked me the question. Truth is there are more thunderstorms in Tampa than just about anywhere else in the world. And during those scalding hot days of June, July and August, where temps consistently and reliably were in the middle to upper nineties with humidity that made the place feel like one huge steam bath, I would silently say to myself, " I can hardly wait to blow this pop stand." The journey from Tampa to Boston was emotionally easy. New England is a four season environment and all of them are eminenty bearable. No friend would get on the horn with me and ask me what the hell I was doing living across the river from Harvard and M.I.T. There was plenty of candlepower to keep conversations stimulating and weather never became an issue. But that was then and this is now.

This is Winnipeg in January. And I won't lie to you. It's colder than a witch's attitude. My truck is a big ass S.U.V with fuel economy that is embarrassingly low. These days I have to fill it up twice as much as I do in the summer time and when is the last time you made sure you were wearing thermal gloves and underwear and a very thick toque in order to spend three minutes outside filling your tank? These days when highs get don't get much better than minus twenty five and lows get lower can get close to minus 35, you have to admit to being 85 percent Canadian and 15 percent wack-job to love the prairie. And yet I do love it very much.

I did seven winters here in the eighties and eight more since I moved back here in the winter of 1998. It is cozy and friendly and a piece of earth that is more down to earth than any place I have ever lived.

It's my kind of Canada.

- Charles Adler,
Canada's national talk-radio host.

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Monday, January 8


Our pal, the (at times) irreverent, incandescent, and neo-punk fugue warbler Warren Kinsella, has emitted a surprising guttural to nemesis Terrie O'Leary, one of Paul Martin's staunchest acolytes: "I provided testimony to the Standing Committee on Public Works (PAC) in April of 2005. I also authorized and presented to the Committee various documents. I regret any harm these statements may have caused Terrie O'Leary. At no time in any dealings involving myself and Ms. O'Leary or at any other time did I observe any evidence of any kind that Ms. O'Leary was ever personally involved in improper contracting activity."

Kinsella, so often shamefully mired in the muck, should spend more time on positive issues seeking the higher ground ...

And former Liberal CabMin Andre Ouellet is suing the government for $3 million for wrongful dismissal. In a story this morning in Paul Desmarais' La Presse, a medium-sized Quebec region newspaper, reporter Gilles Toupin writes that, according to documents obtained under Access to Information, the Martin government gave Ouellet barely 37 minutes to resign as head of Canada Post for reasons long in dispute, this despite repeated assertions at the time by (then) Revenue Minister John McCallum that Ouellet resigned on his own. Either McCallum was oblivious to his own responsabilities, or something's beginning to odoriferously smell like ocean species ...

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Thursday, January 4

Decima: Con 34% Lib 31% Ndp 15% Bq 10% Grn 8%

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Tuesday, January 2, 2007


Gumdrops
Bourque has learned that Don Guy, the Ontario Premier's former Chief of Staff, is now President and CEO at Pollara, the country's leading public opinion and market research company.

According to an internal document, Guy, who won't be involved in any way in any Ontario government work, will be offering "expertise in strategy development, management, execution and relationship-building" to "lead POLLARA through its next stage of expansion to meet the growing needs of its customers at home and abroad".

It is expected that Guy will be steering the company back toward the private sector, where it has enjoyed its greatest success. Don Guy will continue to serve as campaign director for the Ontario Liberal Party, a role he has held since 1998 through to the October 2007 Ontario general election.

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Filed by Pierre Bourque

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