Reverend Doctor Pastor Predator Esquire

The Don Meredith saga hasn’t managed to reveal anything new to us about the operations of the creaky, antiquated wasteland that is the Senate of Canada. It was designed as a bastion of patronage and will remain ever thus until it is levelled to the foundations, restructured or deleted. Piecemeal tinkering, such as when Trudeau declared that there are no more Liberal senators, will never repair it. It was built to reward the party cronies and faithful pure and simple; some of whom are replete with skills, others are a downright waste of space. If Harper had wanted to boost his cred with the social conservatives in the party ranks, there are plenty of Reverend Doctor Pastors out there to choose from. Instead he picked a guy as phoney as the people who were rustled up from Jason Kenney’s office to fake a citizenship ceremony for Sun News. What is very real is Meredith’s titles and faith operation were great cover for a Ghomeshi grade predator. A classic ruse as old as the old boy’s network itself.   

don and harper

There is no point in sticking any honorific in front of Meredith’s name here, for this contemptible Harper boot lick hasn’t truly earned one. Renowned man of faith Desmond Tutu earned all of his titles and initials but he hardly uses them. Tutu would probably make a fantastic senator. You may recall Meredith is the man who at one point was calling himself Reverend Doctor, a title he bought from the internet. When it was revealed that Meredith did this, his “Doctor” title was dropped. He seems to prefer “pastor”now. Not much of an improvement really, for if you put “pastor charged” into google, 20.8 million hits will result. The first few pages reveal mostly sex offences, with violence and financial crimes following close behind. Sure its #notallpastors, but its lots and lots and lots of them.  

Pastor Meredith spoke out against pre marital sex and was decidedly pro marriage, because  in his view marriage eliminated the “social problem”of sex before marriage. It would seem that it’s ok with the pastor to get his Onanist groove on with someone 30+ years his junior and wait not-so-patiently until she was 18 to have actual sex with her whilst all the while being married to someone else. It’s not even a double standard, it’s the absence of any standard. The age of consent rises to 18 when one of the people involved is in a position of authority and it would appear Meredith knew this. Professional frauds and charlatans always know the loopholes. Predators are masters of them.

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Meredith is currently on stress leave from the senate as the dark cloud over him must be darn near visible when he sits in the red chamber. He refuses to heed the request of the open poison pen letter from his colleagues telling him to get lost, still puffed up on the vainglory of his faux credentials or perhaps it’s pure Trump grade hubris. He will not apologize, or respond to interview requests, or resign. The church where he made his mark has no reference to him on it’s website. He’s on lawyer number two and probably on borrowed time. How does this fresh scandal end? Will he be quietly be pensioned off to be forgotten about soon enough? Somewhere a pastor is paying for his on-line credentials and opening a store front church. Don’t hesitate to google them. 

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Join The Canadian Union Of Harper Photo Op Workers Today

If I was going to organize a union from scratch, the first people I would sign up are the workers who are forced to stand behind Stephen Harper when he makes an announcement. These presentations have ramped up as of late with the election in full swing and it’s becoming ever more painful to watch the people quietly suffering in the background every day. They need representation.

I don’t have any hard data as to when this trend officially started but the optics take their inspiration from what transpired in the initial chaos of post 9/11 America. George Bush hit the peak of his popularity in late 2001 as the USA closed ranks and stood behind their president, regardless of their opinion of him. His approval rating rose 30% in the aftermath. The images are unforgettable and strong:

booker elementary

On September 11th, President Bush was scheduled to make an announcement at Booker Elementary School in Florida about child literacy when within the hour, everything changed. A few days later, he was stumbling through the rubble of the World Trade Centre making his brief but famous bullhorn speech to the rescue workers. It was the lead story everywhere.

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Two years later he landed on the deck of the USS Abraham Lincoln in a flight suit as if he’d just arrived from kicking Saddam in the nuts to give his Mission Accomplished speech (which it wasn’t but that’s another story)

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This may have been the pinnacle of Bush’s War On Terror announcements, even though in retrospect it was widely seen as a failure on the facts. The Mission Accomplished Show was well suited to the with-us-or-against-us dichotomy of the time. The key difference between post 9/11 imagery and it’s imitators is that those who were gathered together behind Bush were for the most part in the public employ. No one is allowed an independent political opinion in these situations; they become props pure and simple. The US military answers directly to the commander-in-chief, so you can’t exactly call in sick when the POTUS arrives in a jet fighter with the full spin machine in tow. Attendance is mandatory.

Stephen Harper has desperately tried to harness the power of this type of address but he will use whomever is handy, not just the troops. In Canada the Prime Minister isn’t officially in charge of the military, it’s actually the Queen via her representative, the Governor General. This means if Elizabeth Regina gets into the gin one day and decides we need to invade Denmark, we’re on. Stephen likes to play head honcho though, at one point making a plethora of announcements in a green coat that is about as genuine as the uniform on the guy who was posing as an overdecorated elite soldier on Remembrance Day:

Prime Minister Stephen Harper, centre, looks at a map of the flooded areas of Calgary with Alberta Premier Alison Redford, left, Heavy rains have caused flooding, closed roads, and forced evacuation in Calgary, Alta., Friday, June 21, 2013.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh

This military style attire has no actual meaning except for that which is inferred via the visuals. Captain Harper is whoever you want him to be today. As a young punk I used to wear army surplus clothing all the time but no one ever mistook me for a soldier, or the Prime Minister. The photo above is in post flood Calgary, with disgraced fellow Conservative premier Allison Redford looking for an escape on the left and the guy on the far right of the frame unable to suppress the WTF look on his face. What’s really going on here? Pipeline alignment? Oil spill cover up strategy? Drones being dispatched to buzz Rachael Notley’s house? It’s a farcical little show.

These days the photo ops are popping up fast and furious. Factory workers in Markham, children in a random gymnasium or miners in Hay River, NWT are being forced to dutifully line up behind The Chief In Waiting. What kind of a deal is struck to create this arrangement? Do Joe and Jane Lunchbucket or their kids have a choice in the matter? Hey guys, Mr. Harper wants to play working class hero for a few minutes, can you help him operate the widget machine? Resist and you will be fired. He wouldn’t survive a single shift as a factory worker. To pretend it’s otherwise is a continuous insult to working people everywhere.

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Mrs. H sat in on this one as well, channelling a bit of a royal family narrative with the jewelled necklace and lovely dress. Do pass me a glove young man, I hear cutting oil is a carcinogen. Oh and by the way, Warren Buffett has just bought this place so you’ll need to move to Ohio if you wish to stay employed. I hope I can count on your support. Let me be as clear as the crystal on the supper table at 24 Sussex Drive. Families. Tax Cuts. Terrorists are on every corner. Justin Is A Punk Kid. End Transmission. Repeat.

A most spectacular photo op flame out happened just before the election call, when the man in the blue suit headed out to BC to “thank” the firefighters battling the countless wildfires out west.  It certainly didn’t have the impact of the Bush Bullhorn speech it was attempting to emulate. Battling wildfires, it should be noted, is a provincial responsibility. Except for the brief period when the army was sent in, the feds have contributed zero dollars to the fight. So The Man Who Actually Did Nothing At All interrupted the work in the middle of a disaster to “survey the damage” and tried to coax exhausted soot covered bona fide heroes to spontaneously sing O Canada. He’s quick to pick up the tools in the factory but hitting the smouldering tree line with a shovel might have gotten a bit too much ash on the suit. The green jacket must have been at the cleaners on this day:


Take note premiers, the PM will stop avoiding you and swing by only if your province is in full disaster mode. Be prepared though, he going to try and take the credit for fixing whatever is ailing you. Best wear your nicest blazer, photographers will be present.

I might not be the right person to organize the Canadian Union of Harper Photo Op Workers but I sure hope someone will give it a go. An immediate wildcat strike should be called. Since parliament currently doesn’t exist, no one can be legislated back to work. Anything to make it stop. Solidarity!

All Quiet on the Parliamentary Front

Most Canadians truly don’t want anyone shooting anybody else anywhere. You’d hope not. You’ll hear tough talk and bluster at times, random lad chit chat of the “why if I had a gun…” kind, or perhaps it’s hinted at in a serious speech from on high about redoubling the efforts to counter “terrorist” threats to public safety.

The Prime Minister had nothing to say about the Boxing Day shooting in the Tanger Outlet Mall, a mere 20 minute drive from Parliament Hill. There have been 46 shootings in Ottawa this year, a record number. Only one of them merited any attention from the Conservative government, possibly because it was directed squarely at them.

There were less shootings in Toronto this year compared to the previous, with 175 incidents resulting in 183 victims according to Toronto Police Statistics as of December 27th, 2014. Most of the victims didn’t all die, although 50% more of these shootings were fatal over 2013 (27 compared to 18).

2005 was dubbed the “Year Of The Gun” in Toronto as 52 homicides out of 80 that year were people who were shot, including bystander Jane Creba, who was out shopping on Yonge Street in the Boxing Day sales. Almost a year later PM Harper, then in a minority situation, evoked Crebas name and pledged to get tough on crime and strengthen gun control laws. But forward to another Boxing Day shooting nine years later, with the end result being a wounded person who is “not co-operating”, and there is no comment.

What will the response be when a gang style shooting occurs within reach of Parliament? That will likely depend on the last names of those involved. As long as the capital’s shooters keep their business off The Hill, parliament won’t have much to add to the conversation. Earlier this month, Ottawa police carried out a sweep of people wanted for gang activity. Some of those up on charges for alleged crimes include men with names such as Abdullah, Mohammed and Ismail. The holiday silence would only be broken if their altercations took place within site of the Peace Tower. Terror strikes again! But a shoot up at a suburban mall? Just some gangsters acting up. No worries. Everyone relax. Keep shopping, please.

Is it possible to assign a different weight to the motive behind any bullet, targeted or stray, fired off in a public place? Shouldn’t the long term goal be to stop all gun violence anywhere in the nation? Instead, we get a coded response. The victim is uncooperative. The shooting was targeted. The hoodlums are infighting.

Until there is universal condemnation of every incident and positive steps are taken to eliminate the origins of the violence, whatever they may be, it will continue to occur. The silence from certain quarters speaks volumes.