Prime Minister’s Office condemns rap video that glorifies Taliban terrorists

Your tax dollars are going to fund anti-Canadian propaganda that sympathizes with the Taliban and glorifies violence against Canadian troops in Afghanistan.

The Prime Minister’s Office sent out an email late this evening condemning rapper Manu Militari for producing a music video that disrespects our men and women in uniform,

Despite strong words from the Prime Minister’s Office, the Canadian taxpayer helped foot the bill for the production of the Manu Militari rap video and they also help fund the rapper’s music career and national marketing.

MusicAction is a non-profit organization funded by the Department of Canadian Heritage and private broadcasters to produce and market the music of francophone artists. Since 1985, more than $90 million has been granted to this organization.

For 2012-2013, Manu Militari is slated to receive:
$7,705 (Album Production)
$25,000 (National Marketing)

In 2011-2012, Manu Militari received:
$20,000 (Album Production)

In 2009-2010, Manu Militari received:
$7,100 (Songwriting and contribution grants)

According to an annual report from MusicAction from 2008-2009, Manu Militari received the following funding from the organization:
$5,000 (Artist Management)
$20,000 (Album Production)
$25,000 (National Marketing)

Here is the video that is referenced by the Prime Minister’s Office (it was taken off of YouTube and now has been rehosted by Sun News),

And here are the roughly translated lyrics,

1431, Pashtunistan.

 

Before the first prayer of the day.

 

I leave my lair, a scarf tied around my neck.

 

My eyes scan the sky in search of a drone – as if I’d have time to run before the missile hits.

 

As I walk, I question myself about a thousand things at once but if I continue my journey it’s because [?] strengthens my faith.

 

I cross the rivers and the ravines of my tribal country. After many hours I finally make it to the side of the main road.

 

I get out my shovel, I hurry up to dig a hole in the ground to put an explosive charge of agricultural fertilizers.

 

Inside there isn’t any metal, the trap is undetectable. I just have to erase my tracks before going to the mountain.

 

I position myself strategically, I just hope that nobody spotted me by satellite.

 

I just try to calm my fear, ready for the ambush, finger on the detonator, I’m in no hurry, so I wait.

 

I’m waiting for the one, who should have stayed home.
I’m waiting, and as goes the old Afghan proverb: they may have the watches, but we have time.
I’m waiting for the one, who should have stayed home.
I’m waiting, and as goes the old Afghan proverb: they may kill the swallows, but they won’t stop the spring from coming.

 

[6 months earlier]

 

It’s been hours, the light has chased away the darkness, I realize just how close the road is.

 

Squinting, I may look stressed, but I’m reflecting – just like the sun on my RPG.

 

I’m aware that if I’m ever caught they’ll torture me or photograph me naked on all fours.

 

As if I was just a [?] I get wrongly accused [?]

 

As if [?] was like a cancerous virus, as if I had no children or no tenderness, as if I swept my cave with my wife’s hair, and I warmed myself at night with napalm.

 

As if I was a mentally ill, an extremist, but there are signs for thinking people.

 

I’ve been disfigured, I had acid thrown in my face, scratched out my image to better raze my village to the ground.

 

I’m not the kind that panics under fire, I have already kicked the butt of the British Empire.

 

I’m ready to do the same thing, I’m fighting for the same cause, I always refused the peace imposed by the occupier.

 

I’m far from being a beginner, I’m not afraid of wasting time, I’m ready, I have weapons and powerful arguments.

 

I want to free my land, is not about religion, turn off your TVs: I’ve never hijacked a plane.

 

I’ve fought against poppy cultivation, now if I’m growing it, it is to live, it’s you who’ve pushed me to do it.

 

I am not perfect. My way of life has created victims, but the attacks on my country have made me legit.

 

I’m waiting for the one, who should have stayed home.
I’m waiting, and as goes the old Afghan proverb: they may have the watches, but we have time.
I’m waiting for the one, who should have stayed home.
I’m waiting, and as goes the old Afghan proverb: they may kill the swallows, but they won’t stop the spring from coming.

 

I was about to fall asleep, when I detect the sound of an engine, which paralyzes my legs makes my heart race.

 

I lean hard against a rock, I am afraid of being poorly hidden. I look one last time to see if my weapon is ready to fire.

 

Death is so close, I’m already reciting the [?] The enemy approaches, I recognize Canada’s colors.

 

Like a hundred countries, adrenaline flows through me, in a few seconds they will understand how much I hate them.

 

The wait is almost endless, but I ready to make sure no one slip by me. Eventually the invader reaches my position, I feel so much stress I am feeling sick to my heart.

 

I let a first humvee pass, even a second disappears, but the third: say hello to the devil for me.

Ladies and Gentlemen, your United Nations

One month ago, a wayward bureaucrat (or rapporteur as he is styled) found himself in Canada and decided to tear a strip off our country on the topic of food security in Canada. Yes, while Canada sends billions of food aid to developing countries, the UN came to criticize Canada for how available food is to poor and aboriginal communities. Canada is 6th on the human development index, and while poverty and famine grip other regions such as the horn of Africa, the scant resources of the UN were used to study Canada.

Today, we learned of the head of the UN’s Health Agency’s trip to North Korea where she praised that country for its health system and said that it should be the “envy” of the developing world,

“Based on what I have seen, I can tell you they have something that most other developing countries would envy,” [the head of the UN’s health agency] told journalists, despite reports of renewed famine in parts of the country.

 

“To give you a couple of examples, DPRK has no lack of doctors and nurses, as we see in other developing countries, most of their doctors and nurse have migrated,” the director general of the World Health Organisation said.

 

She also highlighted its “very elaborate health infrastructure” extending to a district network of household doctors, she added.

 

Chan visited the closed communist nation Monday through Wednesday at the regime’s invitation.

 

She met senior ministers and visited health facilities in the capital Pyongyang, as well as a rural hospital about an hour’s drive away.

 

Her visit to Pyongyang came amid reports of a severe food crisis in North Korea.

 

Good Friends, a Seoul-based welfare group with contacts in the North, said in February that 2,000 people had starved to death there this winter.

 

A growing number of North Koreans have fled their homeland, which has relied on outside aid to help feed its people since a famine in the 1990s killed hundreds of thousands.

North Korean officials offer stage-managed propaganda tours for visiting tourists and dignitaries that is so predictable, the same stops (and sanctioned photo essay) unfolds for any outsider that visits: statues, monuments, the metro, and empty dining halls with lots of food. When tours go off-script, they are noted as a newsworthy aberration.

It’s no surprise that the article describing the UN tour of North Korea ended with this concession,

Chan later accepted that what she saw in Pyongyang “might not be representative of the rest of the country.

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Canadian history (pre-1982)

Today marks the bicentennial anniversary of the beginning of hostilities during the War of 1812. The war between the Americans and British for what is now modern-day Canada was a formative event in our history for who were are as a people, it marked a heroic win for British forces in holding the line against the American incursion, and helped defined the politics of our young country and raison-d’etre of its formation. The conflict lasted nearly three years and claimed about 15,000 lives.

Streetlamps in Ottawa are marked with banners commemorating the 200 years since the event. As a significant element of our national heritage, it is being recognized as such with a national public awareness campaign by the Minister of Heritage and Prime Minister Stephen Harper which includes new stamps and minted coins, celebrations during Canada Day, and commemorative deployment of the Royal Canadian Navy to Canadian and US ports.

The War of 1812 represents an important aspect of this Prime Minister’s rebranding of our national image at home. For years, “Canada” was based upon a Trudeaupian narrative hatched out of Ottawa from successive decades of the central Canadian establishment consensus. What made a Canadian a “Canadian” was the fact that he had universal healthcare, and had a well-funded national public broadcaster. Indeed, we were more defined by the nation-building done by our legislators, than by that done by the heroism of hundreds of thousands who put their lives on the line in defense of Crown and country.

Conservatives look to our history and see the individual heroism that defines us while liberals look to our “social history”.

In Ottawa, the chattering classes have been treating the bicentennial of the War of 1812 with disdain, suggesting that recognizing it either costs too much or that it is crass political posturing. To be sure, part of the legacy of this government will be in its recognition of Canadian symbols and history long airbrushed out by Canada’s establishment elite. Consider the push-back received when the Minister of Foreign Affairs wanted to restore the place of the Queen’s portrait in DFAIT and in our missions around the world. And what of the establishment freak-out of the restoration of the royal moniker to branches of our military despite widespread excitement among active personnel? Hundreds of thousands served their country under the “royal” designation. The government’s act was broadly seen (outside of Ottawa) as a restoration of pride. Consider too, the bellyaching heard ’round the Ottawa bubble when Conservatives passed on throwing a ticker-tape parade for the hardly notable 30th anniversary of the Charter.

The 200th anniversary of a war which helped define the formation of Canada may have happened long before 1982 when some in Ottawa believe that Pierre Elliot Trudeau granted us collective and individual rights. The perceived snub of this social history caused great consternation among national columnists and their friends in the Liberal Party, while the recognition of our men and women that serve our country with greater bravery than most of us will ever muster is seen as a waste or a spectacle.

Today, we recognize our nation-builders past and present who guaranteed the rights and freedoms that a pirouetting charlatan in a cape with a rose in lapel would later “liberate” for us to the great admiration of cynics who believe that Canada’s definition stems from governance, not from its glory.

Bob Rae is out

And good for him. Today, the interim leader of the Liberal Party, the past leadership candidate for the same, and the former NDP Premier of Ontario announced that he won’t be seeking to make his current job permanent. No, Rae will not run to be leader of the Liberal Party and carry the Grits into the next election. In the end, he kept his word that he would not run, despite the fact that the party executive was ready to bend space and time in order to allow it.

Why did he dance and skate, as he remarked, through so many scrums and interviews on his leadership intentions? Perhaps Rae recognized that despite its legacy status, Parliament’s third-place party had an uphill battle when it came to generating news coverage for its activities and positions taken in the House of Commons. If Rae were perceived to be a “lame duck” leader with no clout, the press would have just passed over him knowing that any of his pronouncements were temporary at best or lacked legitimacy at worst. By leading everyone on until now, it is certain that he was able to shine a brighter spotlight on his party.

It won’t surprise you to hear that we at the National Citizens Coalition think that Rae made the right decision. While we do wish him well in his future life, if Rae were to become Prime Minister, it would have been a nightmare scenario. During a recession in Ontario, Rae worsened the province’s standing rather than improved it. The NDP has always feared Rae because of his cross-partisanship and ability to draw socialists and centrists together. A Rae leadership would have done more to unite the parties of the left. Even this week, Rae and Mulcair were singing from the same songbook when it came to bailing out Spanish banks and the Eurozone with Canadian cash. Throwing good money after bad is a hallmark of the worst in fiscal management. As Europe seeks to discredit capitalism by rescuing bad investments, flattening risk, increasing sovereign debt while thumbing their nose to calls for spending restraint on entitlements, an amalgamated Canadian left within striking distance of power would only embolden and encourage these instincts at home squandering our hard-won advantage.

But Rae as Prime Minister, or now that he’s out, any Liberal for that matter? That is indeed projecting far into the hypothetical future. Indeed, the Liberals haven’t even found their foothold yet to rebuild their party to challenge the NDP for opposition status. But yet, that is the next task that they face. Rae’s exit will allow an open and fresh leadership race that won’t likely be haunted by any phantoms from generations-past. Granted, Justin Trudeau’s name carries a lot of baggage west of Ontario (and in Quebec) but with Rae out, we will likely see full generational change in the lineup of Liberal contenders.

This will excite some Liberal partisans because the Liberal Party will be a blank slate, without foundational policy to anchor it in any way or another. This will also be to the benefit of other parties that will easily define the Liberal Party for their purposes as well.

Early details about the Liberal leadership race

Remember the Liberal Party of Canada? The House of Commons third-place party has had the luxury of waiting in order to replace Michael Ignatieff with a permanent leader. Former Ontario NDP Premier Bob Rae has stepped in to fill the void in the interim, however, his critics suggest that his plan is to use the office of the Liberal leader to promote and entrench himself to give himself advantage in an eventual leadership contest.

Details are starting to emerge from various Liberal camps upset with this very real scenario. The newly elected Liberal President Michael Crawley was backed by a younger generation of Liberals who have influence behind the scenes of the party in Ottawa. The nightmare scenario for many of these Liberals would have been to present a “renewed” party with Sheila Copps as their President and Bob Rae as their leader. These Liberals have been moving Crawley to define the upcoming leadership race.

I’ve learned that Crawley and Rae will likely agree that the latter must hand over his “interim” title at the end of this spring sitting of Parliament as the House rises for summer.

Also, the projected date of the Liberal leadership race, according to my sources, will put the leadership election date in March or May of 2013. Rae will likely want a shorter race and I’ve heard that March 2013 would be his preferred date. This may indeed be the concession reached, despite the protestation of the other candidates.

As for these other candidates for Liberal leadership, I’ve heard the names David Bertschi, Martha Hall-Findley, Marc Garneau and David Merner.

Does the “government in waiting” support the protests in Quebec?

Thomas Mulcair was elected leader of the New Democrats just a few short weeks ago and so far, he has had a two-fold strategy: to appear closer to the mainstream centre than most would have characterized the NDP in the past, and to hold NDP gains in Quebec by speaking to that province’s issues often to the expense of growth for his party in the rest of Canada.

For Mulcair, support of the radical student movement in Quebec is definitely not in his strategic interests. The majority of Quebecers do not support the nightly protests in Montreal and few believe the protesters are primarily motivated by access to education. The student protest phenomenon in Quebec is neither representative of mainstream values nor of Quebec as a people.

Therefore, cracks in his caucus showing support for student demos in Quebec should cause the NDP leader concern. It is not yet clear if he has roped in his caucus and staff or if he will continue to let them show their true colours.

For example, here is NDP MP Dany Morin’s recent Facebook profile picture:

A story about Morin’s support was written in Le Quotidien,

The MP for Chicoutimi-Le Fjord Dany Morin supports students from the University of Quebec at Chicoutimi (UQAC) in their fight against rising tuition fees. On a personal level, however, while the New Democratic Party (NDP) for now refuses to interfere in the matter.

 

Dany Morin participated in the campaign “Me and my red square” of the Movement of General Student Associations UQAC (MAGE-UQAC), this week. He has been photographed with red square emblem adopted by the student movement in its fight against rising tuition fees announced by the Government of Quebec.

What about NDP MP Pierre-Luc Dusseault?

A press release on his website states,

The member for Sherbrooke Pierre-Luc Dusseault gives his support to the student movement of November 10 and will attend the event in Montreal this afternoon.

 

“It is essential to maintain and improve access to postsecondary education as students request today,” said Dusseault, who was studying political science at the University of Sherbrooke before his election on May 2nd, “What we try for Quebec has served for decades as a model for other educational systems elsewhere in Canada,” said the member for Sherbrooke.

Here’s another release from Dusseault after rioting occurs in conjunction with student demos in Quebec,

I wish to express my support to the will of students and students who demonstrate today in Sherbrooke to improve their financial situation and accessibility to university. As MP for Sherbrooke, I can assure you that the New Democratic Party supports your legitimate claims and requires the federal government to act, in accordance with the jurisdiction of the Quebec government to mitigate the increase tuition.

Here was NDP MP Alexandre Boulerice’s Facebook profile picture for a while,

NDP MP Anne Minh Thu Quach wrote on her Facebook,

During the demonstration outside the Valleyfield College this morning. I spoke out in solidarity for the right to accessible education, respect for law strike and the respect for democracy.


With students at the College this morning! Beautiful energy!

Anne Minh Thu Quach: Despite the cold, several students campaigned passionately that morning for the right to education available! Congratulations to all! They will stand all morning at the College this week! Encourage them if you can! Bring your drums and make them dance to keep warm! 😉

 

Anne Minh Quach: Thu @ Rosh: Thanks for the praise. I act according to my values ​​and my ideals. Several NDP MPs also support students in their approach. Moreover, we have a deputy spokesman in post-secondary education in Quebec. This is Matthew Dube. It also advocates the creation of a federal transfer to provinces and territories that would target post-secondary education in order to provide affordable access to students. @ Louis Charles: That, in compliance with federal and provincial powers. Much like it is already healthy.

 

Anne Minh Thu Quach: This is a matter of political choice and social choice. I believe that there is a more just, equitable and socially rewarding for supporting our education system in making it a simple product consumption.

And what about Thomas Mulcair, how is he handling this issue in his province in balance with being a national leader? And how is our national media covering the issue and how the NDP caucus is reacting to it?

The CBC, um, reports,

May 23, 2012

 

Earlier this spring, the Ottawa media was at pains to find any federal MP interested in saying much about either the policies or the politics driving the mass student protests across Quebec.

 

Opposition Leader Tom Mulcair, whose party represents the majority of Quebec’s federal seats (including several held by student-aged MPs), brushed off questions, saying the student tuition battle was “first and foremost a matter of provincial jurisdiction.”

 

(With yesterday’s intervention — and now funding, too — from labour groups outside Quebec, it will be interesting to watch the NDP generally and Mulcair specifically walk this fine line on the dispute, especially with the leader’s own personal history as a former Charest cabinet minister.)