Open For Whatever We Tell You To Be Open For, Or Else

So remember when I said that Doug Ford wouldn’t be happy until we were all covered in PC campaign stickers? Clearly somebody in his office read those words and thought “wow, what a great fuckin’ idea!” Ontario to mandate anti-carbon tax stickers at gas pumps

Yup. Dude is out here legally obliging private businesses to plaster partisan advertising stickers all over their property like that’s even remotely an ok thing to do. It isn’t, in case you were wondering. It’s a pretty obvious violation of one’s right to free expression, and it’s not exactly one that can be defended by saying something like “sure, but we did it in the name of public safety.”

If you do happen to think this is a good idea for some reason, I want you to let me know how you would feel if things were reversed and Trudeau pulled this same stunt to make everyone praise the carbon tax. You can get back to me when your head finishes exploding.

And by the way, say what you want about the carbon tax and what it might do to the price of filling your car, but don’t forget that if he wanted to, Ford could immediately make that silly little nickel into no big deal just by removing the hefty provincial tax you’ve been paying on every tank for years. He shouldn’t because it would be spectacularly stupid, but he could.

Funny that Doug Ford’s new gas pump stickers forgot to tell you his Ontario govt takes 8% sales tax + 14.7% fuel tax. On a $50 fillup @$1.20/litre, that’s $1.83 to Ottawa (rebated in your tax return) vs $7.35 going to Ford in fuel tax + $4.59 PST = $11.94! Sticker shock?

Ontario drivers could soon see government-mandated stickers about the price of the carbon tax on gas pumps across  the province, as the Progressive Conservatives open a new front in their battle with Ottawa over the levy.
The environment and energy ministers made the announcement Monday in one of the near-daily events the Ontario government has held to slam the tax since it was imposed one week ago. 
“We will make sure that we use every tool at our disposal to make sure that Ontarians understand the impacts of this carbon tax — the impact on their business, the impacts on their families and the impact on our province’s competitiveness,” Environment Minister Rod Phillips said at a gas station in Oakville, Ont.
Ontario will introduce legislation that would require stickers to be put on gas pumps showing that the tax has added 4.4 cents a litre to the price of gasoline and that will rise to 11 cents per litre by 2022.

Energy Minister Greg Rickford framed it as a transparency measure.

“The people of Ontario deserve to know the full truth about how the federal carbon tax will make their lives more unaffordable,” he said. “It will hit our wallets hardest when it comes to gas prices and home heating costs and the businesses and programs and services that we use.”

Justin, Justin, Justin! What Are You Doing?

Trudeau threatens Scheer with lawsuit over SNC-Lavalin comments
PM’s lawyer sent letter to Opposition leader about remarks made concerning the SNC-Lavalin matter

This seems like a good time to ask a question I’ve already asked once this week. Do you guys want to win the election or not?

This is a terrible strategy in every conceivable way, and if that’s not obvious to whomever devised it, I encourage that person to step out of the bubble and look around.

The Liberals have absolutely nothing to gain here.

Even if we take everything at face value and suppose that the goal is to hand Andrew Scheer and the Conservatives their legal ass and then rightfully brand them as liars to the public, this suit isn’t realistically going to be wrapped up until long after the election. In the meantime, all you’re doing is making sure that a story that felt like it may have been starting to wind down stays in the public eye for months if not years.

And what if the court doesn’t find in your favour? You’ve gifted the other side the ability to stand in front of the same public and claim vindication, which in this case means there are still questions to be asked about your integrity.

Alternatively, you could drop the suit and be seen as both weak and a bully simultaneously. Weak because you didn’t have the courage or the confidence in your position to follow through when challenged, and a bully because you tried using the legal system to silence opinions you don’t care for.

Any way you slice this it’s going to look awful to voters, especially the undecided ones.

Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer has received a lawsuit threat from the prime minister regarding comments he made about the SNC-Lavalin affair.
Scheer says he received a letter from Justin Trudeau’s lawyer on March 31.
The letter from Trudeau’s lawyer Julian Porter took issue with what they term inappropriate comments in a statement made by Scheer on March 29 in response to new documents tabled in the justice committee from former attorney general Jody Wilson-Raybould.

“The statement contained highly defamatory comments about Prime Minister Trudeau,” it reads.

Scheer’s March 29 statement, in part, accused the prime minister of political interference, of lying to Canadians and of corrupt conduct.
Trudeau’s lawyer alleges Scheer made false statements, and refers to the Libel and Slander Act of Ontario, which deals with any publicly published material or comments that defame or disparage an individual or their profession.
“The prime minister supports wide-ranging and vigorous political debate on matters of public policy. However, your statement, in its entirety, is beyond the pale of fair debate and is libellous of my client personally and in the way of his occupation as prime minister,” Porter writes.

The Opposition leader said the threat was an intimidation tactic intended to stop him from pressing the government about the SNC-Lavalin matter — but that his party will still continue to push the Liberals for more answers.
“If Mr. Trudeau believes he has a case against me, I urge him to follow through on his threat immediately,” Scheer said.
“I stand by every single criticism I have made.”

Today’s Special Is Domestic Violence

If this happened to most of us it would be the strangest experience of our lives, but in Florida I bet it’s just Monday.

According to a Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office probable cause affidavit, Dankner and his mother were in their backyard when he asked her to dress his mannequin. After she refused to do so, Dankner stood in the doorway, blocking her from getting back inside the home, so she pushed the mannequin to the ground, deputies said.
As Dankner moved to pick up the mannequin, his mother ran inside, but Dankner followed her into the kitchen and pushed her to the floor, deputies said.
Dankner then picked up a small stool on the kitchen floor and struck her several times in the head with it, deputies said. He then “grabbed small dumplings made for dinner and started to shove them into her mouth,” the affidavit said.
After his mother told her she couldn’t breathe, Dankner stepped away from her and began throwing items around the kitchen, including a ceramic cup that shattered on the kitchen counter, the affidavit said.

Three things before we continue:

  1. No, I don’t know why Mikkel Dankner suddenly went from being a him to a her in that snip either. Pretty low rent, WPLG.
  2. It’s a bit on the line, but I think the use of the dumplings has to qualify this as a food feud.
  3. It occurs to me that a lot of you might not get the reference in the title, so have this and this:

Moving on…

Mom somehow managed to get away, and a neighbour called 911 when she heard screaming.

Police arrived and arrested Dankner, who they say was combative with them. But he seems so rational. How can that be?

He’s been charged with aggravated battery on a victim 65 or older and domestic battery by strangulation.

She was taken to the hospital where a cut on her head was stitched up.

The fate of the naked ass mannequin was not reported.

Bad Medicine

Is this a poorly worded headline or is it just me? Expired drugs may remain effective and safe to use for those in remote areas

The story itself does make sense, but the title reads a bit like “let the uncivilized folk eat the garbage medicine.”

And hey, if the stuff stays good for years longer than we’re told, why should the rest of us throw it away? Somebody’s ripping us off even more than we thought.

Even medicines that are years past their expiration date and haven’t always been kept in strict climate-controlled conditions may still retain their original potency, a small study suggests.
That is good news for people working in remote areas of the world where sometimes an expired medication is the only one available and the alternative is having no way to treat a serious illness, the study authors write in the journal Wilderness & Environmental Medicine.
“The expiry date on a drug packet is the last date a drug company will guarantee the drug content and stability when stored in the recommended conditions and in the original packaging,” said lead study author Dr. Emma Browne of the British Antarctic Survey Medical Unit in Plymouth, U.K.

In some parts of the world, doctors face the difficulty of getting medicine more than once a year. It can also be costly for small communities or expedition groups to replace unused drugs “just in case,” she added.
“The doctor must decide if it is safer to give an out-of-date medication or not treat a condition and hope the person gets better, which is a huge ethical dilemma,” she said. “As we push the boundaries of exploration, for example with missions to Mars, the long-term stability of medications becomes even more important.”

Thank You, Dictionary. That’s Helpful

My uncle has a joke of the day calendar. Every morning, he texts a bunch of us the day’s entry. If it’s a question joke rather than a funny quote or one liner, he only sends us that part and then waits to see how many of us can come up with the right answer. It’s a fun little thing. Sometimes they’re puns, sometimes they’re kid jokes, sometimes they’re clever, sometimes they’re god awful. And now and then, like the last couple of days, they get weirdly intellectual.

Yesterday’s was “Why did Karl Marx dislike Earl Grey tea? Because all proper tea is theft.”

For the record, I didn’t get the answer. But I did groan when I heard it, because I know just enough to understand it.

I love my family, but we’re not necessarily the most well read or cultured bunch you’ll ever meet. Yes, I apply that statement to myself. this is why Carin was left explaining to at least one of us that Karl was not related to Groucho and Harpo.

Today’s is “How many surrealists does it take to screw in a lightbulb?”

I texted in an answer pretty quickly, because I’m pretty sure I’ve heard it before and it’s some nonsense like fish or hammer or trombone.

I haven’t gotten anything back yet, but I have a pretty good feeling it’s going to need some explaining.

So because I’m occasionally proactive, I thought maybe I’d go to the dictionary for some inspiration on how to give a simple explanation should the need arise.

This is what I found.

an artist or writer who is an exponent of the avant-garde movement in art and literature which sought to release the creative potential of the unconscious mind.
“the wildest fantasies of the European surrealists and dadaists”


I know essentially what a surrealist is, or at least I thought I did. But anyone who Googled it from a place of confusion now has like 17 more words to look up.

Perhaps the second definition will prove more useful.

relating to the avant-garde movement in art and literature which sought to release the creative potential of the unconscious mind or its exponents.
“Spanish surrealist painter Salvador Dali”

Yes, rearranging the words to make it into an adjective is the technically correct thing to do, but what in the hell is any of that?

The dictionary is supposed to make things less confusing, not more. The only people who are going to be making any sense whatsoever out of that mess are the ones who don’t need to look it up to begin with.

If I do need to explain it or if you need it explained, use the Wikipedia entry, which is actually written in English.

Government Financially Assists Struggling Small Business

Liberal government slammed for $12M retrofit to Loblaws fridges
But let’s be fair. Loblaws is only worth a scant few billion dollars, is so desperate to make ends meet that it had to unlawfully manipulate the price of bread and let’s not even get started on how it’ll ever be able to afford to pay a decent minimum wage.

Opposition parties are protesting the Liberal government’s decision to give $12 million to one of Canada’s largest grocery chains to help make its refrigerators better for the environment.
The announcement sparked ridicule and outrage on Parliament Hill, where MPs from both sides of the political spectrum cast the funding agreement with the Loblaws chain as another example of how the Trudeau government favours big corporations and the rich.

Environment Minister Catherine McKenna defended the move, announced Monday, which sees Ottawa contribute a quarter of the funding Loblaw says it will dedicate to retrofitting fridges in its 370 stores over the next three years so they use less energy. She said the chain is receiving federal support because “they can get the most significant emissions reductions” through this program — the equivalent of taking 50,000 cars off the road each year.
“Let’s be clear, this project actually is going to make a difference,” McKenna said as she left the Liberal cabinet meeting Tuesday. “It’s really unfortunate that you have the leaders of the opposition politicizing serious climate action across the board.”

Oh get outa here. Whether or not it makes a difference isn’t the issue. If Loblaws really wants new fridges, they’re more than capable of paying for them without our help and should be doing so. I have no problem with this money being spent, but it should be spent on companies with an actual financial need.

Seriously, Liberals. Do you want to win the election this year or not? Get it together.

Wrestlemania May Still Be Going On For All I Know, But The Wrestling Notepad Is Here

WWE’s beat the clock challenges are almost always kind of dumb. Who wants to watch a match that randomly ends with no resolution when somebody fails to beat the time? It’s just terrible, unentertaining television. What incentive is there for the opponent A.K.A. the one who isn’t being challenged to beat the clock to participate? They’re flat out being told you’re being trotted out to either lose quickly or beat yourself up for nothing. We never find out what they get if they happen to knock off one of the challengers. But I just now watched Becky, Ronda and Charlotte compete in one for literally no reason. No, “Wrestlemania momentum is on the line” does not count as a reason, announce team. That’s a completely nonsensical statement. Nobody gains a thing here because there are zero things to be gained. It wasn’t for a title match, because there’s already going to be one. It wasn’t determining a favourable entry number, because that doesn’t exist in a 3-way match. All you’ve done is make the Riott Squad who already aren’t over look like even bigger scrubs than before really, really fast and wasted a few minutes of my life. Go away.

I did like Ronda’s “that’s all I have to say” promos though, so at least it had that going for it.

I’ve seen some people upset that Charlotte beat Asuka for the women’s title on Smackdown. I get it. Asuka really didn’t get to do much of anything with her run and isn’t any better off for having had it. But if Charlotte carrying the belt into Mania means that we’re unifying the titles, I’m good. There aren’t enough women on the roster to carry two separate divisions, especially now that some of them are going to have to primarily focus on the tag team side. Besides, there’s only one set of tag titles, so it would make for a nice bit of consistency.

Wait…what…hold on. Did I just see babyfaces doing babyface things? On WWE? What is the world coming to! Dogs and cats living together! The Usos just forfeited their spot in a gauntlet match because they respect New Day and Kofi too much to take a cheap win. I can hardly believe my eyes.

I realize it’s sort of the man’s actual name, but I can’t hear Jax Dane without hearing “jack stain”. Is that the goal? If so, why is that the goal? “It’s funny to make everyone say jack stain” is a perfectly fine answer, by the way.

Oh cool, they are going to unify the women’s titles at Mania. Or at least they’re saying that the winner is going to get both of them.

Why is Beth Phoenix having her first match back after like six years on a random episode of Raw instead of on Mania, which we’re supposed to want to pay for?

Oh fun. WWE is doing its usual stupid tag partners that don’t get along match, but with a twist that is also stupid. Ronda, Becky and Charlotte have to team up against the poor Riott Squad, but “the first woman (Flair, Rousey or Lynch) to betray her team will forfeit her Wrestlemania opportunity.”

First of all, human beings do not speak like that. Please stop.

Secondly, you have to be totally incompetent to book a match wherein there exists the distinct possibility that you will irreparably fuck up the announced main event for by far your biggest show of the year. Even if we stretch logic to its absolute breaking point and say that the person responsible for this decision is hoping to get Charlotte out of the damn thing so it can be the singles match it should have been all along, it’s still a dumb plan because what if she ends up holding her temper?

And hey, what if two people or even all three punch each other simultaneously? Do you call off the entire match or does everything stay as it is? This seems important.

Now having said all of that, why wasn’t that match and especially what followed the last thing on Raw?

Why are we going from that to Braun Strowman beating up guys he’s pretending are from Saturday Night Live?

Why is Braun Strowman feuding with guys who are from Saturday Night Live?

If the story is that Finn Balor is unbeatable when he’s in the demon persona, why would he ever not be in it?

Why does Mustafa Ali have no first name anymore?

I need a keystroke that pastes “holy hell Takeover was awesome” anywhere I need it, because there’s usually not much else to be said after one of these things.

Why, aside from financial reasons, would anyone who became a wrestler because they like wrestling rather be on the main WWE roster than in NXT? It’s such a fun, fan friendly presentation, one where it seems like what you do in the ring actually counts for something as opposed to beating the hell out of yourself on just the longest, most boring, nothing happening messes.

If I were to offer one criticism of Takeover, it’s that we didn’t need a three man booth during the UK title match. Mauro Ranallo and Vic Joseph are both very good play by play guys, but it seemed like they weren’t sure who was supposed to be taking the lead and it made for a bit of a messy call. Add to that the need for Nigel McGuinness to find spots for his analysis and it was just too much. It never completely fell apart because all three are excellent at what they do, but they shouldn’t have been put in the position to all have to do it at once.

Wow, what a Universal title match. Seth gets his ass kicked for what feels like 100 years before he (the valiant babyface I should note) hits Brock in the nuts, curb stomps him a few times and wins. Sure got me excited for this show to go on for five more hours, let me tell you. This is one of those times when I hope they had to lay it out that way because somebody was hurt, because otherwise everyone involved can fuck right off.

Maybe it’s what I get for watching Takeover on the same day, maybe it’s the bad taste the last match just left in my mouth, maybe it’s WWE’s show pacing or maybe it’s my feelings on Randy Orton talking, but I did not enjoy the Styles Orton match much at all. There was nothing particularly wrong with it, I just found it quite slow and dull.

I’m tired of all the 3/4/5/27-way matches WWE insists on. If it’s me I’d rather leave some people off the show now and then for the sake of a more meaningful match rather than bog things down by cramming everyone into every story every time.

Is it me or did Miz beat on Shane McMahon so long that it almost felt like the guy who had been terrorizing a man’s father was supposed to be the babyface?

Never mind. After that finish and the realization that we’re going to have to see a rematch, everyone’s a heel.

Really not feeling this Mania, in case it isn’t obvious. I can’t imagine having to sit through all seven and a half hours of it in real time.

I have no problem with the IIconics winning the Women’s tag belts, but it would be nice if just once somebody could be elevated by holding a title. Are Sasha and Bayley any better off after their two month run? Sure they were the first champions, but what does that really mean when you go on to do next to nothing and then lose right away? It’s yet another example of everyone running in place.

Kofi winning was pretty cool. Great match followed up by maybe even a better celebration. I sure hope they don’t waste a moment like that.

I’m happy that Samoa Joe got to wrestle at Mania, but that was one goddamn pointless match. If Mysterio was hurt that badly going in and they knew it, why couldn’t they have sent any of the other 300 tomato cans on the roster out there for Joe to have that two minute squash with? It’s not as though Joe vs. Rey was built up in any sort of memorable way that made his presence necessary. If it was so important to get Rey a payday, stick his ass in the battle royal. Don’t waste my time with a match like that on a show this long. Save it for Smackdown.

Speaking of things that could have been on TV, there wasn’t much to Reigns vs. McIntyre. It was fine enough I guess, but the story was more about Roman getting back in the ring after his illness than the match itself, and I’ve already seen him in a match. I know it wasn’t one on one, but it never felt like he was ever in enough danger here for me to care about the difference.

It was fun to see him, but should my second favourite thing on the biggest wrestling show of the year be John Cena coming out in his 16-year-old Thuganomics gimmick to make fun of a guy?

HHH and Batista was perfectly acceptable old man violence, but it lost something because it was another case of nothing seeming to be either on the line or in doubt. Of course HHH was always going to win. But let’s say he didn’t and he had to end his in ring career. Who cares? The guy wrestles maybe twice a year, and the rest of the time he’s making far more money running the company. He’ll be fine. That’s not me being a smart ass. It’s the story we’ve been told.

This show is killing me, you guys. I started watching it yesterday. I’ve taken breaks because I had to go do other things. I’ve skipped over everything that isn’t either a match or something that might be important. I’ve had a full night of sleep. I’m still so tired. How do you live watchers do it? I love the WWE Network with all my heart for so many reasons, but one of the worst things ever to happen to WWE is the damn thing giving them the flexibility to run shows that never have to end.

Oh my god there’s still an hour and five minutes on the clock.

They’ve really set Corbin up well to do some fine heel work, but if that really was Kurt Angle’s last match, what a flat end to the career of one of the best wrestlers I’ve ever seen.

Demon Finn beats Lashley in a well worked TV match and is IC champ again. Cool. Can this show please die now?

Joan Jett still sounds pretty good.

So that was…wonky. Either they messed up the finish or they’re trying to set the stage for a Ronda Becky rematch. But if a Ronda’s shoulders weren’t down finish was the plan, why would you do it in your historic first ever women’s Wrestlemania main event? Even WWE couldn’t be that stupid…could they? Match was pretty good up to that point, but would have been so much better on a show half as long. Something honestly needs to be done about the length of these shows.

I am so done.

Leave It To Doug Ford To Design A Tax Credit That Leaves The Entire Province Worse Off

I don’t know if the Ford government is literally overflowing with imbeciles or if it’s just so bent on dinking over the average Ontarian that it doesn’t care if it has to blow its own foot off to do it, but here we are again. Ontario’s low-income tax credit not as good for workers as $15 minimum wage, and it fuels the deficit, new report says

A minimum-wage increase to $15 would have put much more money into the pockets of the working poor than Premier Doug Ford’s low-income tax credit, which will cost $1.9 billion over five years and fuel the deficit, says Ontario’s independent financial watchdog.
A new report from the Financial Accountability Office said the cancellation of the previous Liberal government’s $1 increase in the hourly minimum wage means the province will take in less tax revenue to offset the cost of the Low-Income Individuals and Families tax credit better known as LIFT.
The result should come as “no surprise” to the Progressive Conservative government, said Peter Weltman, who heads the office tasked with keeping track of fiscal issues.
“When you cut revenues you’re going to increase your deficit.”

Weltman’s report found many minimum wage earners do not pay provincial tax and will not benefit from the LIFT credit. He noted, however, about 90 per cent of minimum wage earners will not pay provincial income taxes under LIFT, compared with 78 per cent previously.
The report also estimated 1 million Ontarians will get an average LIFT tax credit of $409 this year at a total cost to the treasury of $418 million. Only 38 per cent of minimum wage earners in Ontario will receive the low-income tax credit.

But there are 1.3 million Ontarians who would have enjoyed average after-tax gains of $810 a year under a $15 minimum wage that had been slated to take effect on January 1 of this year, the report added.

Vic Fedeli, the one that’s supposed to be the numbers guy, defended the PC plan by saying that “There’s no sense having a higher minimum wage if you don’t have a job,” blatantly ignoring even more numbers, specifically the unemployment one that hit its lowest mark since the year 2000 after the business killing minimum wage went up thanks to the Liberals last year.

Another win for the government for the people.

Have They Ruined Sleeman Honey Brown?

We had a friend staying with us this weekend, and since him and I used to love Sleeman Honey Brown but neither of us had drank one in years I decided to pick some up.

Christ, what a mistake.

Seriously, if we got one that wasn’t watery *and* funny tasting, we were treated to one that was watery *or* funny tasting. We didn’t even make it through half the box in three days.

I don’t know if I happened on a bad case, if both of our tastes have changed in exactly the same way or if Sapporo has finally gotten around to wrecking it, but after drinking a few I can safely say that whatever is going on here, I hope it’s not the new normal. It’s not undrinkable, but it’s far from enjoyable.

Don’t worry though, not all hope was lost. When our pal got into town we all met up at Abe Erb for dinner and drinks and we ended up hauling home a big bag of their awesome beer, so we were well set in spite of whatever was going on with the Sleeman.

But please, tell me there’s nothing going on with the Sleeman. Honey Brown used to be one of my favourites, and I don’t want this junk to be my last memory of it.