Today in all that - Macleans.ca
 

Today in all that


 

Rahim Jaffer’s business associate has reportedly boasted of his connections to the Hells Angels. Helena Guergis’ constituents are unimpressed. The Globe and Canwest profile the now former minister of state. Guergis is reported to be “peripherally” connected to Jaffer’s business. The Star reprints her resignation letter in full. And the Toronto Sun manages to exceed all else in tastelessness.


 

Today in all that

  1. Remember when Belinda Stronach crossed the floor? The Toronto Sun is speaking for every misogynist who think that kind of crap is funny. They aren't all rightwingers, but a lot of them are.

    • Just when I thought they couldn't sink any lower, they prove otherwise.

      • Come now, they're only keeping of the standards of illustrious papers named "The Sun".

  2. How many people had to approve that Sun cover? Disgusting.

    • My understanding is that a room full of monkeys (sitting by typewriters) unequivocally endorsed this decision.

  3. Interesting source for the Toronto Sun front page:

    Stephen Wicary, Online political editor, former front page editor, The Globe and Mail.

  4. And the Toronto Sun manages to exceed all else in tastelessness.

    You mean Mark Steyn's writing for them now?

  5. Hells Angels, eh? Influence peddling?

    Oh man, if one of these "busty hookers" turns out to be Julie Couillard…

    • Hahaha, better than a soap opera….

      • Poor Helena. If she hadn't married Rahim, she could have avoided most of this.

        • Poor Helena. Had Harper done his due diligence, and not used her as a prop, she could have avoided most of this.

        • Poor Helena. If she hadn't given Rahim a BB for parliamentary business, and a parliamentary e-mail account, his and her e-mails (the property of parliament) wouldn't have been searched after Tom Clark revealed Jaffer's email address on Thursday's Power Play, and she could have avoided most of this.

          • Looks like David Akin has subsequently followed up on this point:

            It seems probable — indeed, highly likely — that the use by Jaffer of the e-mail account and wireless device by a sitting MP — and a minister, no less — is connected to the series of events the led to Prime Minister Stephen Harper calling in the cops on Guergis. E-mail and PIN traffic to and from each BlackBerry is almost certainly archived and stored by the administrators of the House of Commons information technology and telecommunications services. The admission Thursday by Guergis' spokesman that Jaffer had the use of one of her BlackBerrys — and her office's defence of the practice by noting that everybody does it — may have have initially worried the PMO that this practice was something Parliament's ethics commissioner ought to look into. But then, presumably, someone connected with the PMO asked to review some of the correspondence that came through the account associated with Jaffer and that may have triggered the heightened concerns that led to the belief that, in addition to ethics commissioner, the police ought to be investigating.
            http://davidakin.blogware.com/blog/_archives/2010

        • Poor Helena. If she hadn't treated her staff so poorly, many of them wouldn't have left her employ embittered, with scores to settle, she could have avoided most of this and whatever else will surely follow now that she has been defanged,.

          • LoL! Well played!

          • Looks like CP (Ditchburn?) has subsequently followed up on this point:

            You can't swing a dead cat around Parliament Hill, or even within the prime minister's office, without hitting a former staff member of Helena Guergis.

            That has some insiders wondering why allegations of wrongdoing are suddenly coming to light at this late juncture.

            A former staff member says anyone who worked with Guergis knew how incredibly close she and her husband were, and that they co-ordinated their schedules to be together.

            http://www.google.com/hostednews/canadianpress/ar

  6. Whackjob MP's are nothing new – what is new, though, is the level of media scrutiny that Guergis has come under and I think it has less to do with her complete imbecility and more to do with the fact she is a smokin' hot white woman. Hedy Fry, a known Liberal nutbar falsely claimed that crosses were burning on people's front lawns in Prince George BC – the media barely even batted an eye.

    For the past month, it has been a race among our national media (who normally spend 99% time speculating about when the next election will be as opposed to doing any real and actual journalism) to dogpile on poor sweet Helena. There has been an almost gleeful bent to how the media has portrayed her – the former glamor queen, the beauty who started a failed business in the Rainbow Mall in Angus Ontario. Most stories have made mention of her striking physical beauty, qualities that have less than nothing to do with her capacity as a minister (now former minister) of the Crown.

    Why wasn't Hedy Fry the recipient of similar coverage? Why wasn't the media digging into her mortgage history? Is it because she's an old visible minority as opposed to a drop dead gorgeous white chick? (I've read four or five columns this week which mentioned how she was "strategically" seated behind the PM during question period.)

    What's even more interesting is how this story has played out among female "journalists" because their remarks on her appearance have been most cutting – well, we surely know Kady O'Malley or Rosie Barton or Susan Delcaourt aren't among the ten percent of beautiful people like dear sweet Helena is. One could almost hear them wishing to type that Guergis, on top of being incompetent and having poor taste in men, is also a woman with fat ankles, damn her all to hell.

    Fear not media – she is gone out of government now. You can go back to microanalyzing useless polling data (Kady) or pontificating on when the government will fall. (The rest of the Ottawa Press Corps.)

    • Paranoia is a sickness, you better deal with it.

      What is it about Con supporters that they can't deal with "today". They always have to go back and back with old garbage.

      Sad

      Sad, because it doesn't change a thing about what's happening today.

    • If you really think Helena Guergis is “drop dead gorgeous” you need glasses. She’s a mutt!

      • Looks like someone here subscribes to the Sun….

        • I wouldn’t even use the Sun to wipe my ass. I’d be afraid my ass would end up dirtier.

          • Besides, the dog on the right was a purebred. The dog on the left was a mutt.

    • Kady O'Malley is very cute!

    • I have found exactly one (1) instance on the internet of someone being obsessed with Ms Guergis' looks, and I'm currently replying to it.

      (ps – "Shiller" = nice touch)

      • I just don't see it…. I much rather see substance!

    • I won't disagree – both media and the general public have a fascination with beauty. So you start off with a reasonable plausible premise – it's where you take it that is totally bonkers. The female journalists are just jealous of her beauty….. I mean c'mon – really? Before you respond – Don't hate me because I'm beautiful!

      • All women conduct a "how much of a threat is she to me" once over and with women it's always about whether she has fat ankles.

        • Hahaha….So true my friend!!

      • I think it is definitely true that the media see attractive conservative women as a threat, and they are definitely afforded harsher treatment.

        It is no secret that the media leans left, both here and in the US. Politics at its core is not that much different than classroom elections in school. Better looking people have a natural advantage. Media that have an interest in seeing liberalism prevail are unfairly tough on attractive conservative politicians because they will take every opportunity they can to neutralize that advantage. Rona Ambrose was also subjected to very harsh media treatment. And I don't think it's a stretch to say that Sarah Palin would not have been treated the way she has if she didn't look the way she did.

        • Hmmmmm….. I dunno if I buy into this whole Liberal media VS attractive conservative women thing.
          Are you then saying that they give a free pass to attractive liberal women?

          If you have rode the wave due to your looks, and there's little in the noggin, you can expect criticism.
          If Guergis remained an eye-candy backbencher, there is no way she would face as much scrutiny.
          Instead, she was given a portfolio, and carefully positioned to be seen behind the PM during many QP's.
          So if you are going to try to milk the benefits of beauty, you can't cry foul when things go sour.

          And who is kidding who – if Sarah Palin did not look the way she did, I doubt she would have achieved anything significant. If Sarah Palin was a crusty white man, I think there would be plenty of crusty white men that would come before her.

          Many of us are sick of having stupid people who haven't a clue run for office, who simply read the information that is given to them by the brainiacs who are too chicken to run on their own.

          • Are you then saying that they give a free pass to attractive liberal women?

            I'll go you one step further. They will exploit that advantage wherever it exists.

            Tell me Sam, with "SlaveGate" and an unfortunate comment in her past that young children in India being beaten up by a police officer was "learning their lesson", on what basis could she legitimately be called arising star in her party? Her chiropractic experience? Her Bollywood experience?

          • I won't lie – I didn't pay attention to "SlaveGate", and I really don't know much about Dhalla. But didn't the media go all frothy about this as well? I recall it being big in the news, and people were talking about it. Were they not digging all over for more mud that they could throw? Or are you suggesting that the left media just didn't dig far enough, and thus Dhalla was spared? It's interesting that both Guergis and Dhalla are known to have had issues with former staff, but I don't think there have been specifics from former Guergis employees. Other than knowing that there was a quick turnover rate, the media has not said much, and it hasn't been a story in itself. Guergis has had so many other factors that have made this the story that it is, including of course the actions of her husband.

            I guess that defection story that you linked did not carry any weight? I honestly do not know why she would be considered a rising star – what else has she done? Other than hearing about her because of "Slavegate", I know zip.

          • They did more than "not dig far enough". Some went so far as to claim it was all the Conservatives' fault for Playing Political Games.

            Google search: Ruby Dhalla Nannygate: 368 results
            Google search: Jason Kenney Nannygate: 1130 results.

            How does that happen?

          • So what are we missing?
            I really don't think past employees are credible sources for stories.

            The Dhalla story came into fruition due to gossip from past employees.
            Guergis had bad gossip from past employees, but this was never a story.
            Everything hit the fan for her because of PEI, which was ALL her.

            If PEI had never happened, and the media was trying to run on stories that past Guergis employees were PO'd, I'd also say that it is a non-story. I'd also wonder about who is pressing their buttons to get them to talk. If Dhalla had had a public meltdown, where she abused the nannies in front of other people, then we would be talking turkey. My understanding is that this never happened.

            It seems like you are fishing here. While both "scandals" involved female MP's, the circumstances are very much different. I did not read your link, as I do not subscribe to the Hill Times, and I was thus unable to read the full article and remind myself what was up with Nannygate. Not sure I really want to!

          • The Toronto Star was the paper the broke the nanny story and ran with it, frontpage, for days. Are you honestly saying they did to help her chances in the next election?

  7. Oh … so Hedy Fry gets a free pass because it's not *today*. First off, I'm not a Con supporter – I vote Liberal and have since 1979. Second, the issue for me at least, seeing as how we're talking about *today* is how the national media gleefully dug up every scrap of dirt they could find on Guergis. I'm not denying she should be out of cabinet – hell, she should be running a manicure shop or something like that for crying out loud. My argument is anyone other than a pretty white woman would never have come under this kind of intense scrutiny.

    • Hedy Fry didn’t get a free pass. She was vilified in the press for her cross burning statement. Were you drunk at the time and missed it?

      • Neither Fry nor Dhalla were kicked out of caucus and forced to sit as independents. Both still maintain prominent roles in their party and Fry after being dropped out of cabinet was promoted under Paul Martin to Minister of Citizenship and Immigration.

        Different treatment by the media and by their parties.

        • Did either of them have coked up ex-MP hubby's who drive drunk that were potentially using her resources for who knows what kind of purposes? I must have missed that….

          • So then she's responsible for her husband's sins? Hmmmm … tell that to the thousands of women who are abused each year in Canada at the hands of they're alcoholic husbands.

          • In all fairness, this was more a reference to treatment by media. The two of them have been involved in very unpopular incidents. It's almost soap opera-ish. The public at large gobbles this kind of stuff up. It's like reality TV for them.

          • Very soap opera- ish, it is sad and hard to believe that a woman with such a promising career screwed so badly for the man she loves. I do kind of wish her the best, because I feel sorry for her!

          • Alas, I do not feel much pity for her. That PEI incident made me think of the times in my life where I have encountered difficult people like her. If she was a self made woman, I'd shake it off, but all signs point towards her being a pampered individual who has milked her family connections to climb the ladder. Her sheltered and privileged life made her think the PEI airport was a hellhole – now she's getting the real deal.

          • I do agree with that, she lacks humility, but I still feel bad for her. I mean, what kind of future does she have, who would like to hire or work with her?

            And, I also wanted to tell you, that French is not my first language either, it's Spanish, French second ( I do think in French for the most part!) English and Italian, as you can imagine, I have a party in my head all the time! Sometimes I make my own language (hate to admite it but true, do I have stories to tell, lol!) still no excuse for a badly written comment. : )

        • And Galliano was sent to Denmark!

          • That's Gagliano. Don't confuse it with your favourite breakfast beverage.

          • Gagliano = old overweight white dude.

          • Hey. If you've got a screw loose, pour a screwdriver.
            If you add Galliano, you've got a Harvey Wallbanger

    • What a load.

      Another one of Guergis's staffers, perhaps? I'm sure most of them have come completely off the spool by now.

      • Huh. I thought it was you. Shiller was my tip-off.

        • Give it a rest. Anyone around here could be anybody.

          Anyway, I didn't even make the connection between the pseudonym and the comment. In that context, it seems rather clever now. Or as clever as it gets around here, anyway.

    • uhm that is utter BS (as is i suspect, your claim to be a devout Liberal supporter). the media's treatment of Ruby Dhalla when accused of mistreatment of two foreign care workers belies that.

    • H Shiller, two wods… Ruby Dhalla. I will agree with you on the fact that pretty women get a "special treatment" from the press.

      • Really?

        • Absolutely. As a politician, you are fair game, especially when you engage such incredibly stupid and idiotic behaviour (still can't believe that Guerguis would be dumb enough to allow Jaffer to use her BBerry for business). If you happen to be a young woman in politics, the press will be especially vicious. I do not believe for one second that the Toronto Sun would have used a cover like this one for a man. I remember the headlines for Stronach when she crossed the floor, it had the same crassness. Dhalla wasn't spared either.

          And let's be clear, they wanted to call her a bitch but used the word dog instead, as if that was more acceptable. Do you really believe that they would have used those words had she been a man? Absolutely not!

  8. Helena Guergis should sue the Harper government and the Toronto Sun for malicious libel and Charter right violations.

    By turfing her from caucus and calling in the RCMP, Harper has essentially stamped a "GUILTY" label on her forehead without any due process. The leaks from his office, ominously talking about a "serious breach" and other dark matters, and the subsequent splashing of media headlines across the country, would make it very hard for her to get a fair trial, if she's ever to be charged.

    While I'm no fan of her or her husband, she is still entitled to fairness as a Canadian citizen. I don't think Harper, or the RCMP or the Solicitor General, can go long without stating exactly why she was fired and turfed.

    • I think it is a little premature to make such declarations. Let's see how this investigation plays out….

      • I agree, I don't think Harper would be this harsh unless there was some truth in to this.

  9. We always hear how Canada is such a great country and how proud we are to be Canadians.then we get the eastern media that is so Liberally biased it is shameful .They headline each little transgression by a Conservative,it seems to me we never read much about McCallum and his problem with booze at an international meeting.

    • ,it seems to me we never read much about McCallum and his problem with booze at an international meeting.

      Maybe it's just me, but the Geurgis/Jaffer show is a lot more entertaining and relevant than a story about an 8 year old story about a politician drinking too much.

    • If you were to call a Toronto Sun editor "Liberally biased" to his face, he would probably punch you in the schnozz.

  10. You do realize the biggest offender there, the Toronto Sun, is a largely Conservative paper, yes? It just also runs with Tabloid ruleset in that drama, faux or otherwise, is good fodder for sales.

  11. Wow. It boggles the mind why anyone would still buy the Toronto Sun after that front page…

    • Just for that snobby, unpopuliist remark, I'm going to:

      a) Subscribe to the Toronto Sun
      b) Vote Conservative
      c) Run all my appliances at top speed on Earth Day next year
      d) Move to Alberta
      e) Cancel the abortion scheduled for tomorrow
      f) And like that…

    • I've always enjoyed their sports section, and little else….

  12. This still seems to me to have all the intrigue of the "Dubai Hit". Maybe it was all like the Kerry Diotte gig…a set up from the get go. I wonder what the circumstances were for the original Road Check, was it standard? were Jaffer's prints on the blow bag (was it planted? at the "boozy meeting"?) Not to excuse his alleged drunk driving, like the courts, but perhaps there are far bigger wheels turning here and perhaps when you see inexplicable things happening, the easy answer is not the only answer. Maybe they are both just bent, but it seems unlikely that no one noticed until now.

    All said, I see way more questions than answers and many other "uncomfortable (for some) stories not getting ANY ink…qui bono?

    • Yes, of course! It was all a vast conspiracy to take down a mediocre minister who's entire claim to fame has been looking pretty over Harper's shoulder and throwing hissy-fits in airports, and her has-been husband that somehow managed to lose a Conservative seat in Alberta to the NDP. It all makes so much sense now! It has nothing to do with a couple of people who's egos far outmatched their competency or relevance, its all just a big setup! It's all a part of the vast Liberal conspiracy… the one that can set up this complicated plot to get people arrested and thrown out of caucus, but still can't manage to lead the polls for longer than 1 day per year.

  13. The Toronto Sun enjoys lashing out and hurting people. There is nothing else to say. I am not Conservative; nor a 'fan' of Helena or Rahim. But talk about kicking someone when she's down! Nobody merits that kind of disrespect.

  14. Are you guys kidding??? Spare me the mock indignation and have a measure of objectivity about all these. Bringing up Hedy Fry is rich — people still beat up on her about the crosses incident and it happened over 10 years ago!!!!

    EVERYONE from EVERY party gets dragged through the muck when they screw up — not just the Conservatives by the 'Liberal media'. Try reading the post and see how they dredge up stuff on the Liberals and NDP that happened years ago.

    It is almost sad that some of you lack such inisght and a sense of fairness.

    • Well done Jezza.
      I agree. Dr. Fry totally got beat up in the press, probably more because she was a woman and visible minority, while white old dudes get away with much worse. Hedy Fry made a geographical error of which town she named. Helen and hubby are being investigated by the RCMP for a reason; Jaffer was using government email addresses and technology to further his own business. I mean, how do you not know your husband is using one of your offices blackberries and email addresses; maybe the same way you don't know he is taking cocaine……

      The truth is, every woman will get dragged through this more than a man, because they get labelled as bitches or lesbians and are a great punching bag. We still live in an "old boys" club and have a couple more generations to go before that changes.

      Peace.