'Just recently' - Macleans.ca

‘Just recently’


Peter Van Loan, ThursdayI received it and looked at just recently, in recent days.

Toronto Star, todayResponding by email to questions from the Star, RCMP Sgt. Greg Cox said late Friday the force submitted its 2008 firearms report on Oct. 9, four weeks ago.


‘Just recently’

  1. *Yawn* So what? Politicians lie, lie and lie some more, that's just the way the Word works. Next!

    • Ah, yes. The sneering cynic. A lying politician's best friend.

      • Ah, yes. The cowardly journalists. When was the last time any one of them called these liars liars? I mean directly — to their faces. We need bravery now more than ever. Just come out and say it. This is the latest in a long line of smiling psychopathic purveyors of pathological psychosis. You have our attention. Announce it. Tell us. That is what you are meant to do. (Oh, and Dan, you are best-of-breed because you seem to WORK for a living.)

        • I take the point about journalists not calling a lyin' spade a lyin' spade. In fact, I've had this very argument with editors: There's a definition; if it fits, use the damned word.

          That said, it would be nice if people who are not newspaper editors would be a little more restrained in using the "L" word. To lie, one must knowingly state something false. It requires awareness and intention, in other words. That's hard to prove in most circumstances, particularly if you take into account the spectacular human capacity for rationalization and self-deception. Here's a nice bit of trivia to keep in mind: Charles Ponzi sincerely believed his scheme was a solid investment. That's how the human mind works, unfortunately. Cognitive dissonance is a powerful thing. If the Great Ponzi could convince himself his road apples were roses, why wouldn't we expect politicians to perform the same mental alchemy with less offensive substances?

          • The problem is cognitive dissonance (passive) one thing, plausible deniability (active) is another. And pols have become increasingly skillful at applying the latter. And, the two are hard to prove as distinct in practice.

          • Absolutely. And it's particularly difficult as a conscious dodge can unconsciously evolve into a sincere defence. There's a reason why liars often become self-righteous in defence: it's not an act.

          • yeah i concur Dan. Do you think your ability as a journo to route out cases where it appears that pols have actively structured their plausible deniability (or the info to substantiate it). If so is there any reason beyond the pols are just getting better at it?

  2. I don't think PVL is lying. The RCMP submitted the report, it then went to PMO where talking points were created. These were then sent back to PVL for memorization/recitation purposes. Then he was given the report. So it's quite likely that he only read the report recently.

    • I can understand the report went through a politicization process… In fact, I'm convinced the talking points you mentioned all started with ''What's interesting''. However, at no time during those 4 weeks was that report presented to the parliamentarians who had to vote on the matter this week. That ain't right.

  3. I was being sarcastic. If you check the discussion at the first link in Aaron's post here, you'll see I'm not a big fan of cynicism. I'm also not a big fan of the media's abject terror that using the "L-word" seems to cause.

    When was the last time you called a specific politician a liar, Mr. Gardner?

  4. Van Loan is going to wear this for a long time. Nevertheless, He'll get re-elected in York-Simcoe – because much of the riding is rural and hunting and fishing issues get hot even at municipal level. Big issue a few years ago was – whether hunters could hunt on Sundays….that really split the voters.

    • You are likely correct. Yet, if I were a constituent in his riding, I would not be the first to lead a movement to have him recalled — should the recall luxury live here in the north. Isn't it curious? Those on the right in Canada like everything American until in impinges on their "majority right to govern" as they perceive the result of our most recent election.

      Never a more poignant example of epidemic delusional thinking.

  5. Typically, this kind of report would go to a unit in the department. They would write a briefing note to go along with the report, and it would be sent up the chain. It would go through the various levels of approvals right up to the Deputy Minister, who would then submit it to the Minister's office who usually takes a few working days to sign off on something. Once signed, it would be sent to Parliament for tabling. Four weeks is not unreasonable.

    So really, the issue is not whether the report was delayed. It probably wasn't. The issue is if the vote was rushed to beat the tabling. Same result, different point of view…

    • Based on my experience in a central agency this description is accurate.

      • Yes, but you know better, TwoYen. Stop pretending the political masters have nothing to do with the actions of bureaucrats. Mayhaps you used no butter on YOUR bread, though I'm sure you always ensured the right side faced UP.

        • My point was that the process outlined is accurate. I made no comment about whether a party in power can tweak the timing of reports. After all, if a party cannot tweak the timing of events, what's the point of winning an election?

  6. That report would have made no difference in the 21 ridings of the opp MPs that voted with the government.

    Those constituents in the 21 ridings are likely better informed and more opinionated on the GR stats than the MPs in Toronto.

    • Do you have a moral/ethical threshold it isn’t permissable to cross?

    • I thought it was 18 opposition members who voted with the government at second reading.

      • 8 Libs, 12 Dippers and 1 Indy

    • @wilson

      Why would anyone expect a neutral opinion from you ? Why should anyone care about your opinion ? It is abundantly clear from the weeks and weeks of your online lurking and knee-jerk commentary that you are a political robot. If somebody warned you that your sister was likely to be abducted by a Conservative MP, you would claim it was necessary — to rescue her from a liberal communist homosexual marxist catholic priest who converted to the muslim faith to subvert Ayn-Randian libertarian absolutist truth — and insult YOU personally — because you are such a, you know, nice person. A nice person because, for the first time in your life you contributed $10 to a worthy cause — the Conservative Party of Canada.

      • LOL,
        This is not Liblogs John.

        And perhaps the LPC would not be in the toilet if they did listen, once in awhile, to other opinions.

        My sister died of cancer in 2001. But I do have a living brother if you want to edit that make believe story slightly.

      • Why should anyone care about your opinion ?

  7. *Yawn*

  8. The minister is busy. I'm sure there are occasions when it takes a few weeks to attend to an issue – especially at a time when the private member's bill for the gun regostry was approaching a vote.

    Also, with annual reports about the registry coming in for a decade, I fail to see why reading this one is such an emergency.

    • "The minister is busy."

      Doing what, exactly?

      • Spiting you.

        • Why is busy doing that? Isn't that your job, Angry Angry Hippo?

    • '
      Also, with annual reports about the registry coming in for a decade, I fail to see why reading this one is such an emergency"

      Why should Vanloan get to decide that? Unless your implying it's perfectly acceptable for a politician to only release or read reports that he does agree with.

      • Hello??? He read it and released it.

        • s_c_f you're forgetting one key point. There was an important vote on this very issue the day before he released the report. No matter how busy he is, if there is a vote happening this document is getting to him before hand. If he didn't read it in advance he should be fired for incompetence and if he did read it…well that's just the way the Conservatives roll, hopefully enough Canadians will understand that before the next general election.

  9. As a serial procrastinator, PVL's "recent days", even for something that happened a month ago, is almost acceptable by me.

  10. How is it bad to have this report as the bill goes to committee? Do we know of an MP whose vote will change because of this report? Why would they vote against it at second reading, then support it after it returns from committee? Because that's the only way releasing the report after the vote would have an effect on the bill's actual passage into law.

    • Isn't the hiding/sitting on info you don't like the real issue here? Who the hell is Vanloan to decide what and when info like this should be released?

      • Since the timing of the tabling of the report will ultimately have no impact on vote for the final passage of the bill, this is a non-issue.

        • Capital "B" capital "S" . Did you resign or were you fired? What part of "democracy" did you miss ?

          • I repeat. The report is question will have no significant impact on the ultimate disposition of this bill. All sides are dug into their respective political positions. They are not going to be swayed by a single report that from what I can see had no major new information in it.

      • Who should decide if not the Minister responsible? He was legally obliged to submit it on or before the date it was tabled.

        • And if the report had contained info that Vanloan did want out there the report would have been out two weeks ago. What really amazes me is how this stuff drove cons nuts when the libs were in, but now the boots on the other foot eh? I never want to hear another con tell me how much more principled and ethical they are than libs.

          • PVL has pointed out some things in the report that he finds interesting. What is the crucial information contained in this report that would have stopped the bill at second reading? Why will that information not either stop the bill at third reading or amend it in committee?

  11. That a few MPs from two opposition parties opposed the long gun registry in a free vote is not that surprising.

    That not one member of the Conservatives (not a single one) opposed the measure in a FREE vote is indicative of the monomaniacal nature of the governing party.

    • Most accurate reading of reality so far Amateur Hour. Congratulations. Why do pros apologize when refuting the REAL amateurs ? (Pay attention TwoYen.)

  12. 12 Dippers supported the bill to kill the GR,
    that's all that the government needs to pass 3rd reading.

  13. And the ones hearing it the most right now are those MPs. Just as a gun registry is an ideological candle for the right, so to is it for the left, just the reverse. What you will hear at the next NDP convention will be a public debasement not heard since Jimmy Swaggart's crying jag…

  14. I'm not sure what the Opps are complaining about. At this point in the process, they have a pretty good set of talking points–they can discredit Harper for using "American style" targeting of rural MPs, plus the leaders have the cover of a private members bill. So they can spin the voting as another indication of how they are a 'big tent' party, open to debate, etc, unlike that 'dicatator' Harper and his Con-bots, blah blah.

    So it's a win-win all around. Harper has his policy*, while the Opps have their talking points.

    *Not quite, as more games can be played in Committee and the Senate.

  15. Office speak.

    Some says they looked a report it usually means they didn't read it.

  16. Just for the record, weren't the usage stats essentially the same as the ones John Geddes posted on his blog in April? If so, what's all the noise about? The Mounties have been providing the stats to anyone who asks for them. Why haven't more folks (reporters, MPs, registry supporters) been out there pumping these numbers for the past six months? Could it be that the numbers don't really mean that much, as they measure activity, not utility? And, of course, there are those annoying questions statisticians ask, such as why the registry numbers for Quebec and NB are essentially ther same, despite the population disparities (QC has eight times as many residents as NB)? I'm just asking.