Thursday, February 12, 2009

Vic Toews: Tory Temperature Taker

[as originally posted 01/16/09 on my formerly free thinking blog ]

Western Canada's preeminent Tory pit-bull 'Vicky' Toews just can't stop collecting enemies.

Jesus, now he's fighting with the Injun's!

Pathologically incapable of biting the reactionary side of his throbbing wet tongue - election law breaker Vicky Toews' propensity for verbally ejaculating contentious and crass remarks seemingly knows no bounds. However, in light of what happened last time he unsheathed a different engorged appendage, maybe this is best we can now expect? No longer the Tory "public face of self-righteous morality", Vicky has been re-assigned. Now he's Harpo's Official Western-Canadian Rectal Temperature Taker.

So how does it work?

Well, it goes like this. If Harpo wants to see how a particular group will react to a Tory ploy, or, if he wants to polarize the polity - he sends Vicky out to test the waters. A master of egregious verbosity, Toews is well suited to his new role.

After all, he is the man who fought tooth and nail to have sexual orientation removed from the Criminal Code's hate speech provisions. Who in 2005, asserted the notwithstanding clause was "the appropriate tool" to prevent the courts from ruling in favour of "fashionable issues like gay marriage." Who, in 2006, as Justice Minister "was floating something called a Defence of Religions Act" to ensure religious leaders "would be free to speak their minds about homosexuality without fear of being censured." Basically, the man was trying to circumvent our hate-speech laws. His absolute hostility to gay rights led former MP Svend Robinson to once say Vicky's approach was to put "the jackboot of fascism on the necks of our people.... His ideology is fascism and not free speech."

He has insulted Louise Arbour "former Supreme Court judge and a globally respected jurist" just as she was retiring from her post as UN Commissioner for Human Rights. Angry she had not towed the Tory party line over Israel's 2006 battle against Hezbollah, he called her "a disgrace" in Parliament. Ever a crass-act, Vicky just could not resist denigrating her on the national stage. And the list goes on. You name it, he hates it: Gays, unions, working women, ... the list is long.

And now, it's the "Injuns"!

Well, to be clear, his new target is not really "Injun's." More correctly, they are the seven Treaty One First Nations now "in a protracted legal tangle" with Ottawa over its failure to honour the terms of their 138 year old treaty. They want to secure the land in Winnipeg known as the Kapyong Barracks for their members. Kapyong, 65 hectares west of the city's Kenaston Boulevard, was
once "valued at close to $9 million." Ottawa's asking price today? $42 million. And the government maintains, "it is under no obli­gation to sell Kapyong to the First Na­tions for anything less than fair mar­ket value". A prime location that has real estate developers "salivating", Harpo & co. had hoped to both profit and keep Winnipeg's business-elite happy by selling it to white men who promised to make it "a mix of residential and commercial properties."

But the seven southern Manitoba bands who "want to turn the land into an urban reserve with housing and educational centres" were forced to launch a lawsuit against the federal government over Ottawa's failure "to consult with them on the transfer even though the bands made it clear they want Kapyong as a downpayment on thousands of acres of land they're still owed from their 1871 treaty with the federal government."

Toews original response? Kapyong "
wasn't his problem."

Now? Oh, well now, even as senior federal offi­cials claim in court documents "that the seven First Nations have no legal right to the former Kapyong Barracks" Vicky is saying that "First Nations [should just] take the hous­es instead." Well done Vicky - nothing like offering surplus, aged, Wampum's to First Nations people in the hope they will drop their treaty claim. Nothing like treating people with contempt. Again, well done! Only a fool would take up this offer. Lawyers for the First Nations were right to rebuff it. So now that he's offended them - whose next? God's bastard children? Little old ladies? Or, as he shouted across the floor of the house in December, the "traitors" in our midst?

One thing's for sure, it won't be the Canadian Senate. Toews logic on this issue is impeccable. On the record as officially calling for its complete abolition, Harpo's recent appointment of the gang of eighteen gives him no pause to evaluate the Tory double-standard on this file. In
a letter to the Winnipeg Sun, Toews rationalized Harpo's appointments by saying they were necessary to decrease the "inability of this dysfunctional but constitutionally-mandated institution to carry out its responsibilities in a manner that respects democratic principles." Whew! Vicky, we're glad you've got that covered.

One can only pray that someday Toews will reconsider his divisive modus operandi. Maybe he'll see the wisdom in a noted bug-eyed pundit's take on ideologues that
opined they were to be 'despised' because they invoke ideology "usually [as] an excuse for not thinking things through on a reasonable basis". Maybe, he'll change his ways? But we doubt it.

As Manitoba's
Winkler Times said recently: "Vic Toews: Show the public who you really are. Since Harper was elected, it appears you have agreed with everything he’s said or done. Come on, what are the chances of that? You preached Senate reform and when Harper “postpones” that, you seem fine with it. I’m all for career advancement, but there’s got to be limits."

Well, We Two Arseholes think the real problem is that Toews can't stop showing us who is he is. A combative, divisive figure, full of contempt for those who do not see things as he does (through a narrow prism) - his deep-seated anger towards all with viewpoints contrary to his own is always on display. This aside, we agree with the Winkler Times on one thing: "there's got to be limits."

Doesn't there?

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