The Vancouver Scrum

On the move!

Agh! You’re still here? My new site and weblog, is now up and running; new posts are building up over there, never to be mirrored here. Go! What are you waiting for? All the stuff worth keeping has been migrated over to the new server, and I don’t anticipate making any more posts here.

Bloggers and webmasters: Update your links! Simply replace with in your blogrolls or bookmarks to point to the new site. Old posts will remain on this server for as long as the people at Blogger/Google allow them to remain; unfortunately, I’m not going to bother to come up with any way of converting permalinks on this blog to their corresponding posts on the new site. Yes, I plead laziness. I also realize the irony of switching away from Blogger just it starts to add features that the demanding blog nerds insist upon.

Thanks for reading and linking, and see you over at!

—Ian King, December 13, 2004

Monday, June 07, 2004


Once is Enough

To counter Paul Martin's attacks on Conservative positions on same-sex marriage and other social issues, the Tories have been sending out "Reality Check" emails to hacks across Canada that cite vaguely similar statements by Paul Martin on those issues in different contexts. Example: Paul Martin accuses the Conservatives of wanting to use the Charter's notwithstanding clause in order to ban same-sex marriage, both religious and civil (which every incumbent Conservative MP has already voted in favour of doing); the Conservatives respond -- desperately -- with a Paul Martin statement that he would consider using the notwithstanding clause to override a hypothetical decision forcing churches to consecrate same-sex marriages against those churches' own teachings.

Unfortunately, they sent five identical copies of these missives to my email address. At 30 to 60 kilobytes per graphics- and HTML-laden message, it's clogged up my email. Good thing that I don't have to suffer through downloading these repeat rants over dial-up. Way to win friends there, boys.

Oh, and the worst press secretary in Canadian political history is screaming bloody murder about so-called anti-conservative media bias, and how the evil elite Toronto-based Liberal press will try to pillory Stephen Harper. It should be noted that in young Mr. Levant's world, any deviation from Conservative gospel, critical reportage, or mentioning of thorny social issues is considered a biased hatchet-job.

The observers at McGill, who are analyzing six large Canadian dailies, in addition to one small but influential one -- with commentary by a panel that tilts decidedly rightwards -- disagree with Levant's analysis about which party is getting the more favourable coverage. As of June 4th, the papers surveyed have run 266 stories mentioning the Liberals in a negative manner; the Conservatives have been the recipient of only 63 such mentions. The beauty of Levant's argument is that he can define bias in any way that best suits his purposes (shilling for ultraconservative causes) in order to make his point, so such stats won't knock him "off message". (Then again, could anything cause Levant to go off message?)

UPDATE: The Conservative press office has just sent me a sixth copy of their "Martin Promises to Use Notwithstanding Clause" spin email. Yes, sixth. I got it the first time! Leave me alone! There's a Stanley Cup game in a half-hour!
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