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Posts posted by jdobbin

  1. Reputation ratings could lead to more partisanship, group behavior and cliques IMO. MapleLeafWeb is one forum where a community value of quality posting seems to be emerging, and I would hate to see that impacted by 'reputations' which could merely be popularity contests.

    It seems inevitable that this will happen. Think I'll be withdrawing from participating on the board at this time. It has been a good run and I don't question the dedication of Greg and Charles in keeping the forum running smoothly. I know how hard they have worked in both design and moderating things. It has been great in terms of lay-out and subject headings for discussions.

    I won't be posting anymore although I'll likely keep reading some of the threads simply for the insights. I might send a note or two to people personally if something strikes as something I just have your thoughts on.

    Some of the posters here have been extremely interesting over the years. Some I have clashed with repeatedly but generally were never boring. Sometimes it has gotten quite heated. On occasion, I have stopped engaging with a poster or two to avoid a continuation of something that ultimately was negative. To any an all posters, I thank you and to some, I'm sorry if words or actions were more than just mere disagreement.

    I wish everyone well and if there are any developments on the board, please let me know.

    Once again, thanks for forum and thanks to the people who filled it with their contributions.

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  2. Greg, I don't think that the voting feature will help things, and will likely distract from our discussions.

    I noticed that aspect. I've tested it out with your post.

    One of the thing I don't like about the comments section on media websites is the voting up and down (not to mention the anonymous nature of the posters). In fact, I don't read the comment sections because it is rarely insightful. The voting seems even less insightful.

    Perhaps if the positive or negative thumbs up came with the posters name attached (kind of like Facebook's Like button) then there might be some accountability in choosing to click the button. Then reputation would fall in two directions.

    I will mull things over a bit but it is the type of thing has caused me to depart other forums.

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  3. Ironically, this reform seems to anger both conservatives and liberals. I was never happy with Obama's plan for health care, and it was one of the major reasons I would not vote for him in the primaries. It'll be interesting to see where this leads when all is said and done, but I suspect there will be a lot of complaints.

    I don't think anyone will be happy with the plan.

    What alternatives do you think should have been considered?

  4. Some 400 Canadian soldiers died in Vietnam.

    The numbers are still mostly unknown. Some stats start at 80 and run to 110. Haven't heard the 400 people number but it isn't impossible. Between 12,000 to 30,000 Canadians volunteered for service in the war. No one knows exactly how many. There are still 7 Canadians missing in action in Vietnam. One of those Canadians won the medal of honour and became a prominent businessman in the U.S.

    I have known a few Canadian Vietnam vets over the years.

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  5. It's a high school that offers a fine arts major. The academic requirements to graduate are the same as other high schools.

    Exactly. And here is a teacher that has taken a art class and elevated it to cover history and civics. Students researched their material in a way they might not have done for a class before.

    It doesn't get much better than that for education.

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  6. We walked out dumbstruck by the emotional capital these kids had invested in this project and the talent there is in that school.

    It looks like it started with a good teacher.

    I've often wondered if there was a way to recognize great educators more clearly. Queen's Educator (QE) after their name perhaps?

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  7. No, I'm still waiting.

    The sponsor of the bill say gun registration is ineffective.


    A gunman held a number of hostages in the Workers' Compensation Board building in downtown Edmonton yesterday.

    But Hoeppner said most incidents of violence prove the registry is ineffective.

    "The registry doesn't stop people from committing crimes.

    "It has just been a huge amount of money, time and energy," she said.

    Surely she means all gun registration and if not, why not?

    Eight minutes before I first asked you to back up your accusation, you replied to another poster with: "Next target for you... the handgun registry? Another waste of money?" That would indicate that you know very well the government is talking about long guns. Quit being a troll.

    Quit acting as if the Tories only mean long gun registration is what is ineffective.

    Or do you believe that handgun registration is effective? Why? How? Please explain?

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  8. Alot of people hunt in Quebec. (I don't but my brother-in-law does.)

    The gun registry raises several unrelated issues in Quebec and so people don't say what they really think. As I say, every issue is invariably (and sadly) filtered through the question of sovereignty.

    So if the BQ is opposed, it will earn support from the voters there?

    The Conservatives have a strong local candidate and Harper has apparently chosen to leave him alone to manage the campaign. We'll see if that strategy works. (BTW, the polls close at 9:30 pm local time. For those interested, it may be a late night.)

    You said Ignatieff went to a riding? Hill Times said he has avoided campaigning since it was thought it wouldn't help in ridings that would have been hard to win even the numbers were 5 or 6 points up.

    I'll be watching but my expectation is that all the seats should be retained barring any last minute unexpected developments.

  9. I guess we are destined to go around in circles on this one. You make your assumptions, I'll make mine.

    Still think the question has to be asked if registration is ineffective, does it mean all gun registration. I'd like to know that before the next election.

    People seem to not want to touch the subject.

    Why is it odd that some conservatives question what other conservatives do? Don't liberals ever do that?

    I said it was odd. I didn't say conservative writers thought so. What I said was some conservative writers are wondering aloud about if it meant money being diverted to regional max prisons. Until the article, I hadn't heard that. Reynolds didn't think it was a good idea. For either.

    Governments do that on a daily basis. What does it have to do with this?

    They do. And the public probably expects more.

    As for what it has to do with this, I think that given the urban rural divide many say this represents, it was probably worth a discussion to find solutions to the problem.

    All parties seems to beyond that.

    No doubt you were but I don't believe I was one of them. I did hope Harper would stick to the principle however, ill advised as it was. Disappointing.

    I've often wondered about the legislation on the back end as well. It fixes an election at four years but does it compel the Governor General to call one if the government doesn't want to go to an election? The federal court said Democracy Watch didn't have a case about calling and election. Does that hold true if the government holds out past the date while sticking to the Constitution?

    Unfortunately true but we all have things we would like to see changed.

    If things could get done one thing at a time. Mulroney's changes were ambitious and ultimately, there were a lot of unknowns about the outcome.

    I don't see Senate changes on something like how many representatives a province gets happening without horsetrading on a host of other constitutional issues. I think there mere thought of the possible chaos it could cause is too much for many people to bare.

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  10. Registry? It's an urban issue.

    So people outside Quebec cities are big on long guns?

    Dobbin, you must understand that there is an overriding issue in Quebec: sovereignty. And everything, even the installation of a street lamp, is interpreted according to this issue. Remember Bush's line about terrorists? "If you're not against them, you're for them?" The same is true in Quebec about sovereignty. People are very, very tired of this kind of politics and they aretrying to find a way out. The ADQ was one attempt. Quebec solidaire is another.

    I believe it has been a few pollsters inside and outside of Quebec that have said in a low turnout by-election, the three federal parties exposed themselves on the long gun issue which is important in Quebec.

  11. You're flogging a dead horse. The provinces have a supply of vaccines which they have not yet distributed to local health authorities. Local health authorities don't have the facilities to refrigerate a large volume of vaccine so I'm not surprised the provinces aren't swamping them with vaccines that could go bad if not properly stored.

    So the clinic closures in many provinces are the result of the provinces not distributing the product they have?

    Where did you get that info?

  12. The tories have said the long gun registry was ineffective, but for some reason you feel the need to try to extend it to handguns, you are bitter liberal looking for any cheap talking point even if it is a stretch.

    And you are someone who seems to personalize. Can't you just deal with the argument and not the person.

    I realize you keep saying this was about the long gun registry but Van Loan and others didn't make that distinction when they said that registered gun don't protect police. They didn't. They said registration is ineffective.

    If it is ineffective for one, why would it be effective for the other? What answer do you have?

    In other words throwing crap at the wall hoping just a little will stick.

    Think I'd rather know the answer to the important question of the registry's effectiveness overall but you want to shut down that debate.

    I certainly don't want to hear about it after an election and then you telling me then how it makes sense.

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  13. Waited a few weeks to comment on the CBC's revamp in their news department.

    The National News with Peter Mansbridge was mocked for the absence of the desk. They tried this back in the Peter Kent days. It was silly then as well. Looks like they have stopped Peter from pacing around out there. I am still assessing the main news.

    I think the CBC News website has improved. The CTV website has become worse and from what I have heard there have been a few complaints about the change.

    Haven't noticed a difference in the radio news aside from the fact that they changed the opening music again. I can't remember what they call those opening notes. Anyone remember?

    The Politics show is interesting. I will wait a bit to assess it more. My impression of Solomon prior to his being named was that he might not be evenhanded. That comparison of course is measured against Don Newman. My gold standard for tough but affable goes to Tim Russert.

    I'll wait a bit more to see how things pan out. I will say this: I miss the National and Journal combo. I don't think we shall see those days again but I do miss the gravitas the show had then.

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  14. I'm not so sure if the Registry is useless but it is clear it needed to be revamped. I as well would like to see more study/discussion on this. I don't see how talking about handguns adds to the discussions. I guess anything is possible but we should focus on things that are on the radar. Instead we are talking about what the Tories would do if they win a Majority. Majority????? This country might not see one any time soon.

    I have asked for more discussion on registry. I want to hear what the police say and if we need to poll their numbers, all the better. I'd rather there be disclosure. I have called my MP to push for that type of hearing in the committee.

    Handguns are on the registry. If the registry is useless as the Tories have claimed then it stands to reason that this would hold true for handguns as well.

    I'd rather hear about where the parties stand on the issue rather than wait until after the next election if you take my meaning.

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  15. I haven't personalized anything anymore than you have. This seems to be a tactic you employ when you don't like the way an argument is going. It gets rather tiring. You would like to blame everything on the Conservative federal government, and most people who post here can see that.

    And most people can see where you are going with things and that is on the personal level. Why do it? I realize it is must annoy you to point it out but you are doing once again in this post.

    If you don't want to see something from a poster, put them on ignore. It has to be better than what you are doing now.

  16. Jdobbin why are you continuing with these semantics you know very well the long gun portion has been stressed over and over. There are also been other arguments that have been used against the long gun registry. Right now this thread is being derailed by your partisan attacks instead we should be talking about the next steps of this process.

    One the main arguments against the registry has been that it is ineffective. It isn't semantics since a registry is what covers handguns as well. if one is ineffective, is the other one just as ineffective?

    Is that the next step in the process?

    I have said that I opposed the registry since I favoured a focus on licensing. However, I wanted to hear what police said about in detail before dropping it. However, if the registry is regarded as useless, why is it around for handguns? Surely the same arguments against it stand, don't they? And if they don't, why?

    If you want to debate this, don't keep repeating that handguns will never be dropped if your argument is that the registry is useless.

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  17. On this, the Tories and I agree but I've never heard any one in government advocate abolishing handgun registry even though there might be the odd MP who would like to see it go. This is your own speculation largely rooted in partisanship. Having said that, it is not unheard of for governments to take a different position after being elected than during an election campaign. Chretien on the GST comes to mind and more recently, Gordon Campbell on the HST during the last BC election. Lying to get elected is not unknown, nor is it specific to any political party.

    Think my argument from the beginning has been that the Tories have argued that registration is ineffective.

    They certainly won't remove it from handguns with a minority. However, if the argument is that registration is useless, surely that has to apply to handguns as well. Right?

    Regarding the Conservatives shutting down the prison farms without a debate. I don't agree with it. If they believe they provide unfair competition to private farms, food banks and other charities who would love to have that food.

    I just find it odd and conservative writers are wondering aloud as well. The Neil Reynolds article in the Globe and Mail was particularly pointed saying the Tories wanted to move many prisoners frown low to high security to super regional prisons with the money saved from cutting elsewhere.

    Aside from that, please don't try and maintain that Liberal governments presented every policy change (in the penal system or anywhere else) to Parliament for a full debate. No government does. You know very well that abolishing a gun registry requires changing the law which in turn requires an act of Parliament and will be debated fully. Regarding majorities. What makes a Conservative majority potentially more dangerous than a Liberal majority other than your own ideology? They both have the same powers.

    Don't think I argued that. I was pointing to changes the Tories have made that didn't require any debate but probably should have.

    I also didn't argue that a majority for the Tories is more dangerous than any other party's majority. I am saying that they would do things they presently wouldn't tackle just as the the Liberals did when they had a majority.

    Some of those things from both sides, you probably wouldn't like.

    I believe you recollect wrong, I have always thought a minority government committing itself to a fixed election date was a fools game because they have just given complete control of their government's future to the opposition. I do believe that particular election was politically motivated and did little to serve the country's interest. Nothing new there, that is our system. The timing of almost all of our elections is dictated by the interests of those with the power to force them, not in the interest of the public. Those committing the act will always maintain otherwise but their explanations are generally 90% BS. I am still very much in favour of a fixed date when there is a majority and would like to see it in the Constitution.

    I could go back and look but I faced a barrage of attacks saying it would be impossible for Harper to call an election.

    I don't believe the law would apply to a majority government either. In short, a government can make any excuse to call an election and not violate that law.

    As for the Constitution.... as soon as it is opened, expect everything and a bag of chips tossed in. It will be hatd to control the process even for something small.

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