Friday, June 27, 2008

Broadway Review

Of the three plays I saw this week, Thurgood was the most engaging. Which is surprising: it's a one-man show and essentially a history lesson of the legal efforts of black Americans to end segregation, but the writing, direction, and compelling performance by Laurence Fishburn kept us on the edge of our seats. We laughed; we cried; we applauded supreme court decisions. For me, it was the perfect theater experience: interesting, memorable and very entertaining.

The Country Girl
This play, starring Morgan Freeman, Frances McDormand and Peter Gallagher, got very iffy reviews. In particular, reviewers thought the text was too slight and there was no chemistry between Freeman and McDormand (husband and wife in the play). I disagreed: the play is delightful, with snappy 50s repartee and a really insightful look into a dysfunctional marriage. I think the strange chemistry in the relationship was a deliberate invention of director Mike Nichol (and some reviewers assumed that the play should be just like the 1954 movie version of the play). The only kiss in this version was an extramarital smooch between McDormand and Gallagher. When McDormand and Freeman embrace, it's just a hug. They're very much the old couple whose fire has gone out. That makes a lot of sense as the onion is unpeeled and their core problems are exposed.

Still, it didn't completely work for me, and the problem was the casting of Morgan Freeman. He looked so much older than the other two, and he played the character as almost totally powerless: I didn't believe that he was the charismatic actor that his character was supposed to be, and without that they all just seemed a little too much like losers.

Boeing Boeing
Of my three forays onto Broadway this week, this was the most disappointing for me. It was very good. Mark Rylance definitely stole the show. Christine Baranski, Kathryn Hahn, Gina Gershon and Mary McCormack were all very good. (Kathryn Hahn, who plays a mousy counsellor on TV's Crossing Jordan, is here a wild American bombshell and very funny.)

Maybe I just wasn't in the mood for a sex comedy. Bradley Whitford did all the right stuff, and a lot of surprising physical comedy (including the splits), but his character just didn't work for me - he wasn't up to the same level as the rest of the cast.


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Scandals, Mysteries and Intrigues: Canada Has Got It All!

An American commenter on this site recently suggested that what Canada needs is a good scandal. Omigawd, is he out of touch. Do we have scandal? Do we have salacious intrigue? Get a load of these apples:

* Severed Feet!
As of today, six severed feet in running shoes have washed up on the shores of British Columbia. The feet started to appear late last summer and have all washed up on the same small section of coastline. For a while it was thought that the feet came from a plane crash from which four bodies are missing, but as of today there are five right feet. As the story grows, the pace of feet-finding is picking up.

The media reports have been deliciously enigmatic. From The Globe: "Oceanographer Curtis Ebbesmeyer said that... some beaches attract certain types of flotsam, and the plethora of feet on B.C. shores may be an example of that. "The ocean sorts things out to an exquisite degree," he said. "Some beaches collect just left shoes; others collect right shoes.""

* Northern Femme Fatale Fells the Mighty!
She slept with one senior civil servant in an apparent attempt to obtain government contracts, but when he wasn't helpful she shifted to the then Industry minister and later Minister of Foreign Affairs. When he didn't pony up she somehow acquired some sensitive government documents and produced them in such a dramatic way that he was forced to resign. Ouch! Daily revelations detail her dalliances with bikers and mafiosa. This story has legs: it has captivated the world for weeks, dubiously putting Canada "on the map".

* Hockey Night in Canada Loses its Theme Song!
This story is just about as sad and pathetic as Canada losing its national sport to a country that doesn't even like hockey. Composer Dolores Claman had a chance to go in the annals of Canadian history as a hero, but instead she will be forever reviled as a money-grubbing monster. That's how I feel, and I don't even follow hockey.

* Former Prime Minister Awash in Cash from Arms Dealer!
Hmmm... This was all fun and games when we were talking about people losing their feet, but now it's just sad.


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Obama is Throwing It All Away

Senator Clinton got hammered and hollered at when she waited four days to endorse Obama. Now it's been 10 days since her endorsement and Obama has not done the usual things nominees do to reach out to a losing opponent and their supporters. His 143-word response to her endorsement and concession was minimal, to say the least.

Why aren't they on a stage together, or in a TV ad, or at least making a joint statement? Why isn't Obama drawing her in, giving her a role, or even mentioning her? This race was a photo finish; 18 million Americans voted for her; and yet we, our concerns and our candidate are being treated like we don't count - don't even exist. And this from the guy who said he was the great uniter. (Deja vu all over again: remember when GW Bush promised to be the great uniter?)

I'm not one who thinks that Hillary has to be VP. But Obama should address the issue rather than thumbing his nose at us with his recent bizarre appointment of a chief of staff to the yet-to-be-named veep (someone Hillary was forced to fire during the campaign). If he wants to tell us he doesn’t want Hillary, he should find another way to do it than to thumb his nose at us. One suggestion: give her a different role. Is that so difficult?

Obama is starting to come off like a sore winner. It is starting to look like his attitude to Hillary supporters is "You didn't vote for me so screw you." In their recent endorsement speeches, both Gore and Edwards went out of their way to try to unite the party. Why can't Obama? Hillary said everything Obama could have wished for in her concession/endorsement speech, and then some. The ball is in his court. Other than having his campaign say that the speech was "very generous" and the 143-word press release referenced above, he has done nada. He has dropped the ball, big time.

Maybe Obama is complacent that he's ahead in the polls. But McCain has one big advantage. Obama has the younger demographic, and younger voters aren't reliable about showing up on election day. McCain has the older voters, and they're much more reliable. Everything is going the Democrat's way this year, but it's possible that the anti-Republican trend could stop at the White House.

An estimated 37% of Hillary supporters say they won't vote for Obama, and recent polls show women shifting from Obama to McCain. It's not as clear cut as saying that Obama stands for women's values better than McCain. Women, or at least Hillary supporters, tend to be very concerned about the candidate's qualifications to lead the country in a challenging time - to do things like create a new mandate for the Fed and get agreement on a new international monetary policy. I don't want more conservative justices or tax cuts, but I'm not convinced that Obama is as qualified as McCain to lead the country on the difficult pragmatic things that need to get done. I'm also concerned about Obama's policy on Iraq: the US has essentially destroyed the country, and we can't just pull out and leave it to chaos.

So don't tell me that Clinton supporters are unable to come to terms with her defeat or exhibit bitter clinginess. Edwards supporters got more attention from Obama when Edwards dropped out of the race - long, long before Edwards endorsed Obama. Clinton supporters have serious concerns - the economy, health care, misogyny, and myriad pragmatic administrative issues - and Obama is not addressing us. Instead of a trite logo on his web site saying "Welcome Clinton Supporters" with a link to sign up and donate money, why doesn't he address us on his web site - reach out, address our concerns? He could at least put a little veneer on the fact that he only wants us for our money and our votes.


The Energy Boom

It's a familiar tale. American companies pump Canadian oil and ship the crude to US refineries. There's an oil pipeline south from Alberta, but none east to Ontario and Quebec. The oil boom is creating jobs at the oil patch, but not nearly as many jobs as it could be creating. Meanwhile we provide tax incentives for the oil industry. Our free trade agreement with the US ties our hands in terms of how much oil we sell them, so, for example, if we wanted to slow production until less polluting methods were available, we couldn't.

A recent article in the Canadian edition of Time says that Canada needs to start acting like a global energy superpower, but so far we can't even get past interprovincial squabbling.

Here's a winning election campaign policy that I offer up for free to any party that wants to use it. Make your symbol a banana in a circle with a cross through it. Suggest ways that Canada can become a more advanced economy rather than just a resource supplier to other countries.


Saturday, June 14, 2008

Politics, Like Hollywood Comedies, Is Getting Cruder

There has been a whole lot of penis talk in the news recently. I'm not talking about obscure bloggers, but some of the most popular, most highly remunerated and most influential infotainers in US media:

Christopher Hitchens: "I might orgasm in my trousers" (talking of his delight at the recent media bashing of Bill Clinton)

Tucker Carlson: "I have often said, when [Senator Clinton] comes on television, I involuntarily cross my legs." and "[Lawyer Nancy Grace] scares me. I cross my legs every time she talks." and "It's like those pictures you see of the soccer goalie when they're about to get the free kick. That's me when [Senator Clinton] talks. I can't help it."

Chris Matthews: "[When Barack Obama spoke] I felt this thrill going up my leg."

Chris Matthews has also talks about being castrated. About Speaker of the House of Representantives, Nancy Pelosi, he said, "Is she going to castrate [him]?"

And of course, once said, eveyone else quotes the comments. Mark Steyn received a secondary rush of notoriety for his article called Obama, Political Viagra: "On the strength of Chris Matthews's vibrating calves, Mr. Obama raised a ton of money and massively outspent Mrs. Clinton."

One could argue that these guys are only masquerading as journalists and pundits and are really just shock-jocks, building up their careers by saying outrageous things - really not so different from Howard Stern or Don Imus. The difference is that they're on cable news in prime time, and their shows are taken seriously.

As Hollywood comedies get cruder, it seems that each must always raise the ante and be cruder than its predecessors in order to get the shock that brings laughter. Crudity in media seems to be going the same way (Hitchens' comment is the most recent and most explicit). The way it's going, and with the success these guys are getting with virtually no backlash, it will almost certainly get much, much worse in the months and years to come. And since shock-jock media seems to target women particularly, we should be prepared for even more misogyny and bashing.


Friday, June 13, 2008

Waterloo-Wellington Blogstravaganza

James Bow is hosting his third annual get-together of local bloggers tomorrow.

Huether Hotel
Saturday, June 14 at 5:30 PM

James says that blog writers, blog readers and their friends from Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge, Guelph and elsewhere are invited for pub grub, conversation and camaraderie, regardless of political affiliation. Jennie of Idealistic Pragmatist will be there, visiting all the way from Edmonton, as will Mr. Sinister. (James Bow himself may not be able to make it.)

I'm planning to be there too... I even passed up a ticket to the Grand River Baroque Festival to go, and now I feel the need to plug that. It seems they've sold less than half their tickets this year, and the festival is an incredibly cheap way to hear top-notch Baroque music in unbelievably beautiful settings. It's on all weekend.


Thursday, June 12, 2008

Complacent Canada

Sometimes I despair at the inept and incompetent way Canadian politicians operate and the lazy, mindless way the Canadian public puts up with it. At the moment we really seem like the pathetic banana republic that people outside Canada often think we are.

We have a former prime minister who, while in office, dealt in massive quantities of cash - millions - that he stuffed in his basement safe and apparently didn't account for. After a great many years he was finally forced to admit that he took a few hundred thousand dollars in cash under extremely dodgy conditions from an arms dealer. We have solid evidence that millions more in bribes were provided by an airplane manufacturer - via the same arms dealer - while he was prime minister, and that he was active in securing the deal that the bribes were related to.

When the RCMP tried to investigate the situation in the early 1990s the former PM sued for defamation and got a $2.2 million settlement - and now we know that he lied about salient matters in his deposition, lies that would have resulted in no settlement.

The RCMP has never released any information of interest about their investigation. In fact, by dropping the investigation they led a lot of people to believe that there was no corruption. It fell to investigative journalists to produce the evidence, and one of those journalists has been viciously defamed for doing so.

And we can't seem to launch a proper investigation into any of it. Our current prime minister promised to create an inquiry, but apparently he lied. Parliament's Ethics committee did an admirable job looking into it, but they haven't got the teeth to get to the bottom of anything.

Twenty-five years have gone by on some of this. Some of the key people are dead. The latest news, that the former PM has refused to re-appear before the Ethics committee, has fallen into the public sphere without a ripple.

In the US there is arguably too much outrage at too many trivial things like sex scandals and false demonization of politicians, but in Canada we lean way too far the other way - into complacency and inaction. It's no wonder we have so many scandals: the criminals and creeps can get away with murder here.

Update: Shortly after I wrote this, Harper announced an inquiry. Its scope is so narrow as to be almost useless, and I'm dubious it will actually ever start, but... it's better than nothing.


Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Julie Couillard: Undercover Operative for the Mafia?

Facts are still coming to light on the political and criminal connections of Julie Couillard, but patterns are starting to emerge. Increasingly the media and public are asking: which pattern is true? Is she a con artist or a police informant?

After reviewing the evidence, I am starting to wonder if she has been working for the mafia for the last 17 years. Bikers and mobsters are in the same business and are rivals. She sought out bikers after (and perhaps during) a relationship with a senior mafia figure. Two of her biker lovers turned police informants, which one could presume was in the interests of the mafia. Later, when her biker connections and money dried up, the mafia may have directed her to infiltrate the government. Far-fetched? Probably, and also complete speculation.

Here's what we know so far...

Criminal Connections
* In the period 1991-1993 she dated mobster Tony Volpato. In 1997 he was sentenced to six years in prison for his role in a conspiracy to import 180 kilograms of cocaine. The Star says Volpato "was widely considered the gatekeeper for late Calabrese mob boss Frank (the Big Guy) Cotroni, but also entertained close ties with Vito Rizzuto, considered the godfather of the Sicilian mafia in Canada."
* In the period 1991-1996 she dated biker Gilles Giguère, the right-hand man of loan-shark Robert Savard, a close friend of Quebec Hells Angels boss Maurice Boucher. In 1995 she was taken into custody along with Giguère but was not charged. In 1996 Savard and Giguère were charged with plotting to murder Laurette Lavallee. She was engaged to marry Giguère in 1996, but shortly before the wedding he was killed in a gangland execution. At the time of his death Giguere was facing trial for firearms and drug possession. According to The Star, Giguère became a police informant shortly before he was killed.
* In 1996 she married biker Stéphane Sirois, a member of the Hells Angels affiliate gang the Rockers. Couillard said she insisted that Sirois leave the gang; Sirois says he was forced to quit because of the gang's suspicion that she was a police informant. When their marriage broke up in 1998 he rejoined the gang; he says that ongoing suspicion of him forced him to become a police informant. He is now in the witness protection program.
* In 1998 her father was arrested for running a grow-op in his apartment. She visited his apartment twice a week and sometimes paid the rent on the apartment.
* In 2004 she started a 2-year romantic liaison with Robert Pepin, who was then facing charges for truck hijacking. A really interesting article in the Star shows Pepin to be a con artist and criminal. Deeply indebted to organized crime figures, Pepin committed suicide in May, 2007. While with Pepin, Couillard worked with him in his firm, DRP Investigation and Security Agency. The couple also founded a talent agency, Cinq Étoiles Casting. In 2005 Couillard set up her own security company called Itek Solutions globales.

Political Connections
* In 2004 she wrote on her driver license renewal application that she did promotional work that involved "special events such as volunteering for federal elections."
* In spring 2007 she dated Bernard Côté, a senior staffer to Public Works Minister Michael Fortier. Côté was forced to resign in June 2008 due to conflict of interest: he discussed a federal real estate deal with her that she was pitching on behalf of Groupe Kevlar Inc.
* In summer 2007 she began dating Maxime Bernier, Minister of Foreign Affairs. Bernier resigned in May 2008 when Couillard went on TV and revealed that he had left a NATO briefing book at her house. He had registered her as his official companion.
* In 2007 she took part in a Tory fundraising party for the riding of Châteauguay-Saint-Constant. She gave the riding a cheque for $1,000, which bounced.
* She said in her famous TV interview that she wanted to get into politics and had been approached by the Quebec Conservative party.

Miscellaneous facts and opinions
* From The Globe: "A former CSIS agent, Michel Juneau-Katsuya, testified that... Organized-crime groups have tried to place moles inside government institutions... and the pattern of her behaviour seemed like "a classic recruitment operation.""
* Bloc Québécois MP Serge Ménard, who is one of the top experts in the House of Commons on security issues, has said that "she represented an enormous security risk for a [cabinet] minister" and "the Hells Angels could have either blackmailed her or Mr. Bernier, or lured Mr. Bernier into a compromising situation." Menard also said that Couillard is listed in various police forces' databases of persons of interest.
* She seems to have plenty of money but it is not clear where it comes from.
* In her famous TV interview, she justified her history with bikers by saying, "I knew that [Giguère] knew people who knew bikers, but I didn't take the bikers seriously. To me they were just tough guys who rode motorcycles. The real criminals were the Mafia." A few weeks later it was revealed that she dated a mobster before she started dating bikers. I think we should disregard everything she said in that interview: she is simply not credible. But I also wonder if she was playing some subtle games: again, pure speculation, but she seems too clever by half.
* Hells Angels chief Mom Boucher told the Globe & Mail that in 1996, when Couillard started dating Giguere, he suspected she was a police informant trying to infiltrate his inner circle. His claim is corroborated by testimony in a biker trial that he had considered killing her because of his suspicions. Sirois has also said that Boucher was very suspicious of Couillard. (Note that the media remains focused on the biker angle, and has not explored the possibility that the mafia might have directed her actions.)
* In 2004, the Quebec provincial police force cleared her to obtain a licence to conduct security and investigative work. The Globe says "She used her licence to work with DRP Investigation and Security Agency, run by her boyfriend and convicted criminal Robert Pépin." Some people see her ability to gain clearance as evidence that she was a police informant. I'm not convinced: she has never been convicted of anything, but Pépin has. The real question is why the Sûreté allowed Pepin`s company to get a provincial contract to transport prisoners.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Uniting the Party

I recently wrote about Hillary laying down the gauntlet in her concession speech, saying that she would fight to ensure Americans had universal health care - "no exceptions and no excuses".

Today, Obama said he's going to partner with Elizabeth Edwards on health care. Elizabeth Edwards supports Hillary's plan.

Why did Obama name Elizabeth Edwards? Is it a gesture of support for Hillary or a slap in the face? If it was meant to make Hillary supporters happy, it is uncharacteristically inept.

It's starting to bother me that Obama isn't making a move to unite the party. Everyone gave Hillary grief about waiting four days after her defeat to endorse Obama (even though past candidates have received no grief for waiting up to four months) but I'm starting to think Obama should get some grief for not immediately reaching out to Clinton supporters. It's not that he needs to make concessions; it's that he needs to make a gesture. Not doing so indicates a disturbing arrogance. There's nothing worse than a sore winner.


The Issue of Race

We'd better start preparing for the racial attacks against Obama.

My guess is they will not be attacks on his color per se, but will be an attempt to portray him as anti-white. This tactic will come from several angles: making it seem that he is connected to radical anti-white groups, playing up the anti-white rhetoric at his former church, and that sort of thing. In addition, I have heard a rumor that there is a 30-minute video of Michelle Obama saying some things about black-white relations that, released at the right moment, could be very damaging. The truth is that black people have had a really raw deal in the US and there is a lot of very justified bitterness in the black community. With the right spin, this bitterness could be portrayed as a reason to not vote for a black candidate.

There are some people in the US who are not willing to vote for a non-white candidate. Once they get to know Obama and hear him talk, many of those people will come around and drop their prejudice; some will not. But I don't think that's the real threat.

The real threat is that "conventional wisdom" will become that President Obama will only represent the interests of black people or that he has anti-white sentiments. The fact that this is hogwash is irrelevant. Many people believed, at least for a few months, that John Kerry was not a war hero but was in fact a coward. Many people believed that Gore was a delusional liar. For some reason the most successful negative strategies seem to be the ones that are the opposite of the truth. Obama is a leader on racial cooperation, but may be made to seem divisive on racial issues.

This sort of ghastly reversal of the truth works for two reasons. One: timing. It has to be done late enough in the campaign that the candidate doesn't have time to effectively counter the slander. Two: it has to dishearten the candidate's supporters. Even if they don't believe the lies, their enthusiasm is muted; their support weakens; they may not show up on election day.

The Democrats are really in the driving seat this year. We are set to sweep congress and the White House. We should be trying to foresee this sort of swiftboating tactic in advance so instead of being shocked, we can rise up and yell "Bullshit!"


Saturday, June 07, 2008

What Hillary Wants

In her speech today suspending her campaign and endorsing Obama, Hillary said:
We all want a health care system that is universal, high quality and affordable so that parents don't have to choose between care for themselves or their children or be stuck in dead-end jobs simply to keep their insurance. This isn't just an issue for me. It's a passion and a cause, and it is a fight I will continue until every single American is ensured - no exceptions and no excuses.

With this statement, Hillary declared her determination to achieve universal health care for Americans - "with no exceptions and no excuses" - even though Obama opposes universality. In fact, during the campaign Obama released a series of ads attacking Hillary for seeking universality. More than one carried the slogan "Hillary's health care plan forces everyone to buy insurance, even if you can't afford it." Paul Krugman estimated that under Obama's plan, at least 23 million Americans would remain uninsured.

Everything else in her speech was aimed at subsuming Hillary's political machine into Obama's to help him become president. On this one issue did she defy him. And I think that gives us a little ray of insight into her goals.

The pundits have been opining that Hillary has been using her photo finish power to force Obama to give her the vice presidency, or the supreme court, or some other big job. I think it's more likely that what Hillary wants is to finish what she started in 1993 and obtain health care for all Americans. It's more than a Herculean task - it's the sort of monumental achievement that might use up the entire career of a great person. And she seems ready to give it her all.

Now that's a legacy to make the vice presidency seem pretty trivial.

(Note: Thanks to my friend Ellen for pointing out that Hillary broke with Obama on this issue. It sailed right by me when I first listened to the speech, and all the pundits also seemed to miss it.)


Tuesday, June 03, 2008


My initial urge to start a blog, some years ago, had to do with some things I wanted to say about Al Gore. That was back before Gore's image was rehabilitated by his Nobel prize, Academy award and great work on the environment. Back then I was fascinated/horrified by the mind-bogglingly unfair character assassination that Al Gore was subjected to in the 2000 presidential campaign. I supported him, and then the world came to believe - unbelievably - something that was completely untrue: that he was a delusional liar and an incompetent boob.

One of my early posts went,

My fascination with Al may have been rooted in his potential to create a vastly different, vastly better world than the one we live in now, and it may have been driven by the shocking events that split our history off into this world of torture, death and government surveillance, but it took the form of a frustrated need to understand how he was defeated and how he has coped. did the Republicans convince Americans that Al Gore, who had a sterling reputation as a conscientious, hard-working, all-around straight arrow, was in fact a self-aggrandizing delusional liar?

...Then there's his coping. This guy was so buttoned up that there were jokes that he made FBI agents look like hippies. After his defeat he went through a brief phase in which he gained weight, always seemed to appear with a drink in his hand, and affected a devil-may-care attitude. My collection of Al photos from 2001 includes one of him shirtless and barefoot, sitting in a back yard in what appears to be a trailer park, leaning way back in a lawn chair and brandishing a bottle of beer.

What went on? What lessons does this teach us about how to overcome being crushed, humiliated, and cheated? Did his transformation help him get past it, or is he a broken man?

Later I wrote,
I don’t usually get too worked up about politicians losing elections, even when I’ve busted my butt helping their campaign. As good as they are, as unfortunate as it is that they didn’t make public office, they always have pretty good fallback positions.

Al Gore, as of this writing, is the president of a television station, the chair of an investment company and a board member of Apple Inc. Some call him the “conscience of the Democratic Party” and he makes a lot of high profile speeches.

Al’s no Gregg Allman, coming home from tours where thousands scream his name to a rented house and long dusty walks down country roads lugging beer and wonder bread because money he could have spent on a car has gone to drugs and alimony.

So then... Why did Al act like that for six months?

So now I find myself in an eerie period of deja vu, feeling that the candidate I supported, Hillary Clinton, was demonized in a way that was breathtakingly unfair: that "coventional wisdom" is perpetuating complete lies and misinterpretations of things she, her husband and her campaign did and said; that the attacks on her were rooted in a prejudice against powerful women that is so entrenched that there is widespread denial (despite overwhelming evidence such as that provided on this site) that it occurred; and that all this was done not by Karl Rove but by her own party - by my party!

Commenters on this site have accused me of being overly partisan to Clinton. I support her, for sure, but my passionate reaction to this campaign is due to the blatant, ghastly displays of sexism and to my living through, for a second time, the fictionalization of a great person. I have been transfixed by this horror story ever since it really started rolling, sometime late last year. The crazy demonization seemed to peak around February 5, just long enough for Obama to sweep Super Tuesday. Then there was a backlash as Clinton supporters started to rally, but even millions of passionate Clinton supporters couldn't make a dent in the "conventional wisdom" that she is a nasty, hypocritical, power-mad bitch.

Now that she's lost it's easy to pick out all the mistakes she and her campaign made, but I think Hillary Clinton's failure really comes down to one main factor: people are uncomfortable with the idea of a female president. A president is a paternalistic figure: he wears a suit and tie, he rolls up his shirt sleeves, he projects a certain authority that we simply don't connect with women. As the pundit famously put it, "When Hillary Clinton speaks men hear, Take out the garbage!" But this isn't a problem of men versus women. Many men have acted admirably, and many women have been sexist. This is a matter of a systemic problem in our society.

As with Al, I have no fears about Hillary Clinton's future. She may end up as VP, a member of the supreme court, governor of New York, a powerful senator or, really, whatever she wants. There's no reason to feel sorry for her.

But I feel great remorse at the idiocy and malice of the mainstream media, the so-called new media like the Huffington Post, and mostly the moronic US (and Canadian) public who bought and perpetuated the lies.