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SpankyMcFarland last won the day on July 29 2023

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  1. Insightful, my painful backside, just a bunch of balloons yelling at each other.
  2. Where did you learn this retro vocabulary about Catholics? These days, people with any education in Scotland would be embarrassed by you.
  3. Didn’t I just say I have an open mind about this? Far brighter people than me know about the Wuhan lab and they will go wherever the evidence leads but it has be hard and fast. The actual molecular data etc. doesn’t point either way so far. When it changes, I will change my opinion. Whatever the outcome, be it from a lab, a wet market or something else, the PRC has been highly obstructive to finding the truth.
  4. Perception is not reality. If people stop taking vaccines, let me assure you these plagues will reappear. And what about HPV vaccines? They have the potential to virtually eliminate cervical cancer and its precursors which are a significant threat to the health of young women right now. BTW vaccination played a modest role in the 20’th century decline of TB.
  5. The origin of Covid has been an open question since it appeared. I think it remains so. BTW the alternative theory of wet market origin does not reflect well on the Chinese government either.
  6. So what are the dangers of these childhood vaccines? What is the risk of death or serious illness per million vaccinated? And how does that compare to the risk of not being vaccinated?
  7. It doesn’t assume that but in bilateral relations it is often the case. Us talking to the Americans is not like Belgium doing a deal with the Netherlands because the US is a superpower with an economy that dwarfs ours.
  8. I was talking about his entire career in the quote there. It is impressive to me that a private citizen nearing 80 mark and long out of a major political post would still be as engaged as this. Fortunately, up here we’ve learned to put our leaders out to grass quite a bit before that. Re: NAFTA, like any weaker partner in (effectively) bilateral negotiations we can only do our best to get what we can. That’s how it has always been here, and everywhere else in the world. I think we’ve played a bad hand well.
  9. And then there was the after-sales work long after the warranty ran out, maintaining NAFTA: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/world/us-politics/article-mulroney-worked-to-defend-nafta-legacy-long-after-leaving-office/ Of this man it could be said, ‘I have done the state some service, and they know't’.
  10. Here is a typical Mulroney quip: Of the criticisms that could be leveled against him, not being conservative (as in pro-free market) enough would be a rare one: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/commentary/article-brian-mulroney-canadas-unabashed-champion-of-free-enterprise/?utm_source=infobox&utm_medium=inarticle&utm_campaign=mulroneyinfobox
  11. Political campaigns inevitably focus on unpopular policies and inconsistency in these matters is not a prerogative of any political faction. Look at the shambles of our military procurement. I’m grateful that both Mulroney initiatives have survived to this day.
  12. Mulroney was hardly in a fiscal position to radically reduce the tax burden after the conspicuous spending of the Trudeau years. If we accept that, then aren’t consumption taxes generally more favoured by conservatives than, say, income taxes? The GST’s survival ever since speaks to its effectiveness as a policy. I think it would be less unpopular if it was hidden in the cost of the item but other legislation made that change impossible at the time. One annoying thing, in my part of Canada at least, is buying a pricey item like a car. The sales people inevitably quote the price sans the taxes, not what I really have to pay, which makes me want to walk out immediately. The free trade deal with America was not nothing - it was exactly what most conservatives and many others consider an intrinsically good thing. Indeed, the Americans had to be persuaded to take that plunge as well as the Canadian public. Although an unpopular policy at first that made Mulroney’s life considerably more difficult, he persisted and risked his job over it. Unlike Trudeau, whose career loomed over both him and Chrétien, he was no intellectual - it is said he preferred policy options to be made as simple as possible, sometimes in cartoon form - but he had excellent instincts. NAFTA, the GST and many other initiatives are testimony to that. We needed such pragmatism at that time. Politics is the art of the possible. Any leader who moves too far from the mainstream will fail. Canada’s centre is considerably to the left of America’s and that’s how it is. Here is one assessment of Mulroney’s legacy. For monoglot dunces like me, the English starts around 3.40: In my opinion, Poilievre would do well to give more speeches like this which echo Mulroney’s style somewhat. It was touching. Zingers about the government have their place but voters also need inspiration.
  13. Fenian? That is another tradition. It was the right decision for the country. Is this a joke?
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