Saundrie

After much prodding by other bloggers, I set this up for my own writings. The name is in honour of the two women that mentored me throughout my life on politics and intelligence issues, as well as being wonderful family members, now alas deceased. I hope to live up to their standards at this site.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

This is a dangerous claim to be making without evidence

Look, I do not like Peter MacKay. I consider him to be the picture perfect definition of the "promise/say one thing to gain power do the opposite once in power" kind of politician. I hold his actions campaigning for the PCPC leadership and his decisions once he came to that leadership against him. I consider him to be the most unethical federal politician sitting in Parliament of any party. I consider him to be the worst political traitor/betrayer in Canadian political history. In short, I loathe the man for his actions over the last three years.

All that being said though, this allegation I saw on a blog linked to by another blog troubles me. Not because I can't see it being true, given my opinion of MacKay I could believe pretty much anything where his ethics, or rather lack thereof is concerned. My problem is that this is a very serious allegation to be making, and to be doing so without providing any evidence of any kind to corroborate it is in my view more than a little reckless and not something to be encouraged. This blogger may well have heard this rumour floating around Calgary, I have no idea, nor any way of verifying it. However, until something more than this comes to light I would strongly caution Liberals from using this against MacKay. I would caution anyone that does link to it to underscore that this is a rumour, unsourced and uncorroborated in any manner. Even the Blogging Tory that had the Graham being a pedophile post provided more in the way of links/"evidence" to corroborate his argument/allegation. This is notwithstanding the reality that the evidence provided on this matter was nothing any serious minded person could take as valid/serious, but it was there. In the case of this MacKay allegation not even anything that thin/weak has been provided.

If one is going to link to this and discuss it, one IMHO needs to underscore just how unsubstantiated this is, how no evidence supports it has been provided, and that the original blogger that claims to have heard the rumour in the "real" world (as opposed to virtual) is not someone known. That this is purely unsubstantiated rumour and that to try and make it sound like anything more than this with the current amount of information available may well open one up to some type of slander/liberal lawsuit. Besides, doing so is muckraking in my opinion, and that is not something I have a good opinion of.

The Liberal party right now cannot afford to be linked to making up scandals to attack the CPC with. Their credibility is already damaged enough, to do so would only make matters worse, which given the arrogance we have seen from the Harper government to date is not something Liberals need happening. Besides, I am not sure the Grewal fraud is gone and buried for good, so damaging Liberal credibility in this area would be a bad thing, as would it be for Liberal affiliated bloggers IMHO. Just my thoughts on this matter, at least for now given the paucity of information surrounding it.

9 Comments:

Blogger Paladiea said...

Funny how no one is howling at your absolute gall for criticizing a liberal.

I guess it's only wrong when you criticize Connies.

Thu Feb 16, 09:41:00 PM 2006  
Anonymous GoodGrief said...

Scotian, agree with your analysis. This is one slippery slope, and anyone who follows it without proof is in for a ride.
It would be better to concentrate efforts in pressuring the progressive parties to get their act together - NDP and Hargrove, Liberal leadership and platform etc.
Smearing the reputation of anyone, without proof, only mobilizes their supporters to fight back with any means including further smears - a thoroughly ugly situation which detracts from the real issues of the day.

Fri Feb 17, 09:31:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Scotian said...

paladiea:

Yes, I noticed that, funny isn't it. I don't care for the way some people find the net useful for spreading rumours about those they do not like and refuse to be a part of it. It is interesting to note though that when I do this to Conservatives I get yelled at all the time yet now that I do the same regarding someone that is clearly opposed to the Conservatives...silence.

BTW, nice to see you, glad you like to take a look, I very much enjoyed the arguments you made at My Blahg regarding a certain bigoted personality that kept demonstrating said bigotry in the attempts to claim they were not. That was rather enjoyable as I recall.

GoodGrief:

I try to be consistent in how I apply my principles/beliefs. I realize that John didn't think so, but then John wasn't being terribly honest in his criticisms with all his reading between the lines as he admitted he did over at Cathie's the other day. When I encounter something like this and I see it linked to by at least one other blogger then I will likely blog about it here, it is one way I hope to prevent this sort of thing from becoming commonplace in our politics unlike what I have seen in our southern neighbour.

Thank you for your kind words.

Fri Feb 17, 01:30:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Paladiea said...

Thanks Scotian, I really do enjoy reading your posts and comments. You raise the bar for the rest of us and I appreciate that.

Fri Feb 17, 05:38:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Scotian said...

Paladiea:

You know though what really saddens me about your compliment? I have gotten this from others over the years, yet the way I write is the same as I speak, and it seems to me to simply be basic courtesy/manners that I was raised with and grew up around, and not just from my immediate family but from most of the people in the city I grew up in. Yet many find it somewhat remarkable the tone I manage and my unwillingness to resort to profanities and/or let my temper get the better of me and cause me to be intemperate in my words, at least outside of the very rare exception which I end up apologizing for and those generally are triggered by unrelated events stressing me from other parts of my life.

I also do not find myself all that much of a good example given my long winded style, yet again there are many like yourself that appear to appreciate it. I think though much of it comes down to the irony of someone that was born with severe ADHD and still has to deal with its impacts on my life has a better attention span than many in this so called ADD culture. That is partly why I tend to write the way I do in such detail, it helps me make sure that my arguments are well grounded in something and not just out of nothing unlike some.

It bothers me that so many people not only are willing but want to live in such a simplified world instead of the complex set of realities that we all live in. This tendency to want bumper sticker/slogans instead of complex thought/ideas in debate, especially in things as inherently complex as democratic politics is something I find very worrisome. It allows for false equivalencies to be drawn very easily. It does not describe anywhere near adequately enough the dynamic interactions that are involved, both by a decision/non-decision and the ongoing continual flux it all takes place in.

We live in the most complex societies to exist in since we have historical records for. Our understanding of the world around us and how we interact with it from the atomic level on upwards is like what we have never seen before. We have access to all this information from anywhere on the planet through the technologies we have created. All of this creates new forms of power just as the agricultural and industrial revolutions did. This revolution I tend to agree with the Toffler's (Alvin and Heidi, authors of Future Shock/Third Wave/Powershift and War and Anti-War) that 1955 is a good point to use as a starting point. They chose it because it was the first year there were more people working in service/white collar professions than were in production/blue collar professions in America, the clearly dominant economy of that part of the century onwards to today.

By now we are well in the middle of this transformation, which is in part I believe why we are seeing this trend. Those that already have power in the older power structures do not want to lose theirs, nor do they want the competition, yet they cannot prevent it without literally destroying society as we know it. So these interests will place resources into creating means by which to control these new power structures, slow it down and restrict access long enough to develop counters of some type, and I fear some would rather see it all fall apart if they cannot be on the top of the power pile. Human nature is something I never forget about, and our history shows how rich that kind of darkness is in the human soul where power can be concerned.

So I go out and put my opinions out there and hope that some find them interesting and possibly useful. I recognize in the world of ideas that a snowflake (idea) can be pivotal in shaping the direction of the avalanche depending on its position (availability). I have no illusions that I am actually having anywhere like that kind of disproportional impact, but I can have confidence that my actions give me good reason to hope that it may. If for no other reason than to have that kind of hope in today's world is sufficient for me to keep doing what I am doing and how I do it.

Besides, I've noticed my style really seems to offend those that want to turn things into a cheering match or bumper sticker/slogan based "debate". That also has it's appeal, but I see that more as a fringe benefit than anything healthy as a primary motivation. Thankfully I have more positive ones than that. I just can't avoid the fact I am human though and will take some guilty pleasure out of frustrating those that I tend to take issue with/oppose philosophically and/or politically.

One of the things I loved most about the Canada I grew up in was the willingness to treat each other as human beings, even those we strongly disagreed with on political/philosophical grounds. It is something I do not want to see lost, and have hopes that if enough people fight for it by example that over time it can become widespread again. Our civility was a cornerstone in our culture and society, and I fear that is under significant threat from forces both within this country and without. That last is not paranoia it is recognition of the international economy/society we are a part of. I see good manners as the grease for the social machinery to keep things from getting stuck, overheating, and eventually breaking down. It may be an old fashioned perspective, but just because a concept is old does not automatically invalidate its worth/accuracy/truth.

So that is the example I am trying to provide, I doubt I do a great job of it, but I do think I do well enough to feel some sense of satisfaction from it. I hope you didn't mind the lengthy response, but here at this blog I am willing to add more to my thinking than elsewhere, if only because it is centered here and easier to keep from having taken out of context and then used to try and "discredit/destroy" me yet again. It is too bad that this mentality has become so accepted by so many, I really think it is inherently self destructive over time and I cannot understand why this is so hard for so many bright people to grasp.

For many of the Conservatives online I have seen are quite bright/intelligent, but so many of them are also so angry and contemptuous of those that do not see the wisdom in their words/beliefs. Contempt is poisonous, both to the one on the receiving end and even more so to the person employing it. I may strongly disagree with Conservatives, I may really be troubled by the CPC itself, and I certainly tend to be in opposition to it as it currently exists. I do not though hold everything they want to do in contempt, nor do I hold all the MPs in contempt, nor do I hold the vast majority of online Conservatives in contempt. Contempt is something that needs to be reserved for the more/most egregious acts/people. For one of the dangers of contempt, especially when applied on a broad scale to categories/labels/groups will almost certainly end up dehumanizing those within the definitions applied to the categories. That is never a good thing IMHO

Even those I believe must be opposed with force/military might I refuse to do that with. I remember supporting the first GW literally from the day Saddam swallowed Kuwait. Not because I thought it was a just war or any of the spin/propaganda used to support the war by so many of its advocates, but because I thought the precedent being set would last for years, possibly decades as this was the first significant international conflict since the end of the Cold War and the Berlin Wall fell down. If it was let stand that countries could be taken over like that without strong measures to reverse it then the shape of the planet would become intensely unstable. It may sound cold, but given the proliferation of all the weapons from the Cold War suddenly opening up in availability with its end, anything to try and maintain stability at the nation to nation level was desirable. Internal strife was inevitable, but at least we might be able to try and limit to that, and the first GW did that for the 1990s. However, having to swallow being on the same side of GHWB when he was selling this as a just war, a holy war, well that was rather sickening to be honest.

I forced myself to watch everything I could on CNN, taped the interviews of the players when I was sleeping. I recognized that I was supporting the death of thousands of human beings, possibly tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands if things went really bad. I could not understand the war supporters that were getting off on what was coming and their language of turning the area into smoking glass was truly disgusting. Ultimately we are all equally human beings and our lives all have meaning, if only to ourselves and those that we love and/or loved by. To forget that is to forget the damage we do when we use such force through our governments, which in a democracy means the ultimate authority and therefore responsibility for the use of force and its consequences are the citizens of that democracy. So when we forget the humanity of our enemies we start to lose our own humanity as well, and that is a price that should never be paid too lightly, preferably never at all but reality does not always allow for that. It must be as rare as possible though, because we are all lessened by it.

Fri Feb 17, 08:04:00 PM 2006  
Anonymous john said...

You try and prevent this kind of unsubstantiated rumour from spreading by posting it on your blog and linking directly to it? Come on, who is being dishonest now? Like I stated before, any time you get a chance to score a point you do.

Tue Feb 21, 03:17:00 PM 2006  
Anonymous GoodGrief said...

John, you are representative of what ails us.
Scotian, where are you? Hope all is well.

Tue Feb 21, 10:24:00 PM 2006  
Anonymous john said...

What is that GG? What ails society today?

Wed Feb 22, 03:25:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Scotian said...

GG:

I have been having connectivity troubles the last few days. Without warning my net connection keeps dropping, and it makes trying to post anything more than a little challenging. Besides, just because I haven't posted in a few days does not mean anything has happened, it could just as easily be that I didn't feel there was anything I particularly felt needed to be blogged that others had not already done.

I use the internet primarily as an information gathering tool more than a commenting tool. I am also watching the Olympics when the Hockey and Curling is going on, I have a wife to look after as well, and I also like to get outside for a while, which is what I did yesterday. Do not fear, I expect to have at least one or two new posts before the end of this week-weekend. I thank you though for your concern.

Wed Feb 22, 03:37:00 PM 2006  

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