As the United States Department of Fear would have it: Ignorance causes fear.
Thursday, December 22, 2011
As the United States Department of Fear would have it: Ignorance causes fear.
Tuesday, December 20, 2011
Monday, December 19, 2011
Sunday, December 18, 2011
may, if he thinks it necessary to do so, adjourn the House
without putting any question, or suspend the sitting for a time
to be named by him
British House of Commons Standing Orders
Hansard HC Deb 22 November 1920 vol 135 cc38-43
Mr. DEVLIN May I ask the Prime Minister why it is, when a question is put to himself and the Chief Secretary to recite all the horrible occurrences that have taken place last Sunday in Dublin, that we have heard nothing about the appearance of the military forces at a football match. [HON. MEMBERS: "Oh, oh!"] At which ten people were killed. [HON. MEMBERS: "Sit down!"] I will not sit down. I want to know from the Prime Minister why the House of Commons has not been made acquainted, in the recital of these other things that have occurred, with the onrush of the military into a football field, with fifteen thousand people, indiscriminate shooting, and ten men killed. Why was the House not told that when the other story was being told? May I ask for an answer?
Sir H. GREENWOOD I was never asked that question referred to by the hon. Member, but I am prepared to answer it now.
Mr. DEVLIN rose to put further supplementary questions, amid loud shouts of "Sit down!"
Grave disorder having arisen, MR. SPEAKER suspended the Sitting under Standing Order No. 21.
Sitting suspended at Five minutes after Four o'clock, the public galleries being also temporarily closed.
Mr. SPEAKER resumed the Chair, at Twenty minutes after Four o'clock.
Major MOLSON I wish to apologise to the hon. Member for the Falls Division (Mr. Devlin), to you Mr. Speaker, and to the House. I am afraid that I allowed my feelings to get the better of myself, and I forgot myself.
Welcome to a special holiday edition of House of Commons Night in Canada, continuing with our focus on the apparent decline in standards of debate in our own House of Commons. I'm Ron MacLean here with Don Cherry. Don, there's been a lot of interest over the last few weeks in how Canada's House of Commons conducts itself. Aaron Wherry quoted the Ottawa Citizen as saying, and I'm gonna read this out:
Yeah, I think this is an important thing to talk about, especially for all the kids out there watching. I went and had a look on the internet about this - I'm starting to get the hang of this internet thing, although I still don't get Twitter...
You definitely need a Twitter account. I'm imagining @HNIC_Grapes...
...Forget it...but I can see the attraction of looking up stuff almost instantly. So I went looking for unparliamentary language in the Mother of Parliaments...
...that's the British House of Commons...
...right, where we were tuned into the toe-to-toe debates in the summer, and hey, presto, there's a lot of good stuff.
For instance the front benches of the British House of Commons are two sword's lengths apart, because MPs could carry side-arms into the Commons!
So, not very different from the NHL.
Absolutely! And then I discovered Wikipedia that had a whole section on "Incidents of grave disorder in the British House of Commons..."
And are they going downhill as well?
That's the interesting thing! The Brits seem to be getting better not worse. One of the more recent incidents was of Michael Heseltine, a Conservative MP, who on May 27, 1976, in the context of a vote on the Aircraft and Shipbuilding Industries Act, seized the Mace and waved it in a threatening fashion at members of the Labour Government who were singing a song at him.
Sounds like Alan Eagleson. Justin Trudeau looks like a model of restraint.
It gets better. In 1920, during some of the Irish difficulties, an MP in what is now Northern Ireland wanted to know why the government was concerned about the killing of members of the British military in Ireland, but neglected to mention the random killing of Irish spectators at a Gaelic football match at Croke Park....
The subject matter sounds a little dangerous but not out of control. I don't recall any random killing of spectators at a hockey game in Canada...
Yeah, well what happened next was that Devlin was attacked by a Major Molson (no relation) - physically - and hauled over his desk. One of the other Honourable Members in the Government was heard to shout "Kill him!" (as reported by The Times) after which the Speaker adjourned the House because of "grave disorder."
Well, it does make Justin Trudeau seem like a model of restraint...
...and then Molson came back and apologized, just like Trudeau did.
So no lives were lost.
My point exactly. A lot of feeling got aired, there was a frank exchange of views, and then the business of the House went on as before.
So, in your opinion, there's no cause for despair here in Canada?
Absolutely not. It's the game of parliamentary democracy. You have to let 'em play.
And until the New Year, that's it for us on House of Commons Night in Canada.
Do you like my new suit with the Winnipeg Jets logo on it?
It's very elegant, particularly with the Art Ross tie.
Yeah, well, he played for Brandon.
Friday, December 16, 2011
"The Pentagon has learned nothing, and forgotten nothing."
- famous quote, maybe by Talleyrand
Testimony July 16, 1973, by former Major Hal Knight, USAF, at Hearings of the Senate Armed Services Committee, Ninety-Third Congress, on bombing in Cambodia - particularly regarding falsification of records of B52 targets - page 44
Mr. Knight. Frankly, sir, I felt that the Senate Armed Services Committee was deceived. On this side of the House, if you go up through the military chain, I don't imagine that anybody was deceived.
(emphasis added )
"I, _____, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God." (Title 10, US Code; Act of 5 May 1960 replacing the wording first adopted in 1789, with amendment effective 5 October 1962).
So really, the question is what happens when an oath to defend the Constitution conflicts with an order from the President of the United States and his appointed officers, particularly when the order is unlawful.
So that takes us back to Nuremberg, and the Charter of the International Military Tribunal agreed in London, August 8, 1945, in particular Article 8:
"The fact that the Defendant acted pursuant to order of his Government or of a superior shall not free him from responsibility, but may be considered in mitigation of punishment if the Tribunal determines that justice so requires."
There you go. Keitel was hung at Nuremberg. The majority of his crimes had nothing to do with the Holocaust, and everything to do with violations of international humanitarian law as it then existed. For example:
"When, on 8th September 1941, OKW issued its ruthless regulations for the treatment of Soviet POW's, Canaris wrote to Keitel that under international law the SD should have nothing to do with this matter. On this memorandum in Keitel's handwriting, dated 23rd September and initialled by him, is the statement:" The objections arise from the military concept of chivalrous warfare. This is the destruction of an ideology. Therefore I approve and back the measures." Keitel testified that he really agreed with Canaris and argued with Hitler, but lost. The OKW Chief directed the military authorities to cooperate with the Einsatzstab Rosenberg in looting cultural property in occupied territories."
"In the face of these documents Keitel does not deny his connection with these acts. Rather, his defense relies on the fact that he is a soldier, and on the doctrine of "superior orders" prohibited by Article 8 of the Charter as a defense.
There is nothing in mitigation. Superior orders, even to a soldier, cannot be considered in mitigation where crimes as shocking and extensive have been committed consciously, ruthlessly, and without military excuse or justification.
Conclusion: The Tribunal finds Keitel guilty on all four Counts.
Thursday, December 15, 2011
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
So we're back on House of Commons Night in Canada with a torrid wrap-up to the current session, Justin Trudeau having called the Minister for the Environment, Peter Kent, "a piece of shit." That's pretty inflammatory language, Grapes, and we've talked before about respect in the game of Parliamentary Democracy, so what's your take on Trudeau and his apology.
He's got nothing to apologize for.
But it's not parliamentary language, as Trudeau himself said, and apologized for without reservation.
Yeah, OK. So he wasn't Churchill, who could've got the point across in parliamentary language just as cutting, but not everybody can be Winston Churchill. The fact is that Kent's comment was the definition of - how you say in Yiddish - chutzpah. The government refused to let opposition members be part of the Canadian delegation to Durban, then Kent complains that they were't there.
How is that chutzpah?
I read the definition of chutzpah is somebody who kills their parents and then complains about being an orphan.
That's a pretty inflammatory statement all by itself.
Hey, I didn't make it up. It's like I said about Pat Martin: if I have to choose between bad language with honourable intentions, and smarmy PR language with evil intentions, I'm gonna take bad language every time.
Now you're the one being inflammatory.
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Monday, December 12, 2011
So much for plans to smuggle humans across the border disguised as the brass section of the International Peace Gardens Symphony Orchestra. It's time we launched anti-Predator Twin Otters armed with the LePage Glue Gun (both Canadian technologies):
Yossarian sidled up drunkenly to Colonel Korn at the officers' club one night to kid with him about the new Lepage gun that the Germans had moved in.
"What Lepage gun?" Colonel Korn inquired with curiosity.
"The new three hundred and forty four millimeter Lepage glue gun," Yossarian answered. "It glues a whole formation of planes together in mid-air."
Colonel Korn jerked his elbow free from Yossarian's clutching fingers in startled affront. "Let go of me, you idiot!" he cried out furiously, glaring with vindictive approval as Nately leaped upon Yossarian's back and pulled him away. "Who is that lunatic, anyway?"
Give us your Predators, your Reapers, your RQ-170's. We'll give you back more Justin Biebers, David Frums, and Mark Steyns. We have lots of them.
Friday, December 9, 2011
The best Congress money can buy passes the hideous National Defense Authorization Act that dispenses with the rule of law, habeas corpus, the American Constitution, all that. This brings to mind the extra-constitutional courts established in the Third Reich - the lovely Roland Freisler presiding - particularly Tony Scalia and the Guantanamo kangaroo courts.
Good night and good luck.