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September 2007 Blog Archive

My archived blog articles for September 2007 are below. You can also click the respective links for my current blog articles, my featured blog articles, and my complete blog archives.

The Political Witching Hour
21 September 2007, 09h00 EDT (GMT-4)

Live Blogging the Leaders' Debate
The Leaders' Debate Blog
Click logo for the complete transcript

It is in the moments after a leaders' debate that political campaigns cast the most potent spell of the dark arts of spin: telling the electorate what they saw and heard, and therefore what they think.

Far fewer people will ever view a debate than will read and hear about it later. Moreover, even those who diligently sit through the proceedings can be remarkably susceptible to the following day's received opinion. For both these reasons, the campaign that controls the debate after-chatter has the power to re-write history.

In an effort to offer an analysis insulated from partisan talking points and untouched by post-debate spin, CanWest drew together a panel to provide a live blog-driven commentary on last night's Ontario leaders' debate. Former NDP president Adam Giambrone, former Mike Harris Chief of Staff Guy Giorno, CFRB radio host John Moore, and I put fingers to keyboard to offer up our analysis as the pearls of wisdom (or other matter) dropped from the lips of the provincial leaders.

Each of us certainly has decided political views, but I felt that the tone of our exchange was constructive, respectful, and thoughtful, and I hope that it was a useful companion to the debate.

A full transcript of our commentary from the National Post is available by clicking here.

Ironically, each of us found our hastily typed words being cited by the three political parties in their post-debate press releases, in at least one case to support a view that was apparently not his own. It seems that the dark arts of spin can even feed upon counter-spin.

The Great Facebook Plague
10 September 2007, 13h53 EDT (GMT-4)

My Facebook Profile
My Facebook Profile
Click logo to link our friends lists

If the nation of Facebook has a capital, it is certainly Toronto. More than eight-hundred thousand of Facebook's thirty-four million members call Hogtown home. Although London's one million members represent a larger absolute number, Toronto has a vastly greater percentage of its population online at the social networking site.

Succumbing to the plague, I have set up my own Facebook page, which has already proven to be quite a boon in re-connecting with old friends, making new ones, and discovering the virtue of electronic graffiti.

If you are willing to brave Facebook's infamous links to the CIA's In-Q-Tel project, you can link our Facebook "friends lists" by clicking here.

The People's Viceregal Representative
07 September 2007, 15h02 EDT (GMT-4)

The National Post
The National Post
Click logo for full article

After something of a summer literary hibernation, I have been goaded by the back-to-school season to reprise my metaphoric pen, and begin blogging again. My first new entry follows an article I published in the National Post, on the role of the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario.

I came to reflect on the question of what is the justification, indeed what is the very purpose, of an unelected and symbolic head of state in a modern democracy, after my cavalry unit had been asked to provide the mounted guard for David Onley's installation ceremonies.

Though seemingly paradoxical at first blush, I came to the conclusion that the office of the Lieutenant Governor of Ontario has blossomed in democratic importance and popular relevancy as it has withered in formal power.

The full article is at my publications section.





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