Wednesday, October 12, 2005

For the record

Babble on.

This isn't a return to blogging.

I'm simply a little tired of having Warren Kinsella spread disinformation about a dispute the two of us had right around this time last year. Since the incident, I have refrained from talking about it because a) this egomaniac needs more attention like you and I need a sucking chest wound, and b) he's dink enough to start tossing around lawsuits at the slightest provocation. But enough is enough.

When Lt (N) Chris Saunders was killed fighting an electrical fire aboard HMCS Chicoutimi, I got angry. I didn't get angry because he died - men and women in the CF die as a result of the work they do all the time; it's an occupational hazard given the job description. Accidental deaths make me sad, not angry. No, I got angry because Chris Saunders' death was the result of our Liberal government buying the wrong subs at the wrong time for the wrong reasons. I know it, Saunders' mother knows it, our Parliament knows it.

So when I saw Kinsella, the ultimate Chretien insider, writing mournfully on his blog about this entirely preventable tragedy, I lost it. I lashed out. I fired off a blog post that said he was part of the problem - part of the Liberal government that handled the sub purchase so abysmally - and should therefore stow his crocodile tears. I was furious, and the post certainly reflected that.

Now, as it turns out, maybe his tears weren't faked. Maybe he was genuinely expressing his sympathy for a little boy who lost his father, as Kinsella himself had recently. I don't know.

What I do know is that Kinsella threatened to sue me for what I wrote. I pulled the post and deleted comments from another related post in an effort to avoid litigation. I'm not a lawyer, I didn't know if I had crossed some legal line, and I wasn't interested in going through a civil suit to find out. After a brief shitstorm around the Canadian blogosphere, Kinsella dropped his threat.

But he continued to misinform people - the vast majority of whom would never have seen my original short-lived post - about what I said. I tried to ignore it, and for the most part succeeded in doing so. Unfortunately, he just keeps bringing it up.

Now, he's presuming to understand my motivations:

Another one wrote, around the same time, that I - the son of a guy who had been so proud to have been a decorated officer in the Armed Forces - had actually contributed to the death of a Canadian sailor. Me, personally.

The objective had been to hurt my feelings, I know that. The authors of those statements were far-right creeps, or emotionally-troubled, or both. I know that too.

But, even though I knew all that stuff, I was pretty upset. I wanted to find the men who wrote those things and beat the living shit out of them. That wasn't a good idea, obviously. Instead, I told these losers I'd sue them. Eventually they backed off, and I moved on. But the haters are a durable lot.

Hurt his frickin' feelings? I couldn't give a rat's back end about Warren Kinsella's feelings. I was too busy venting my own to give the slightest thought to his.

I'm glad Kinsella's father served with distinction. I sincerely hope that as a result he harbours the respect he says he does for our men and women in uniform. But I saw people I went to school with carrying Lt (N) Saunders' coffin; I have friends who have rotated in and out of overseas missions so many times by the age of thirty-five that their kids barely recognize them; I know people flying in worn-out aircraft that need dozens of hours of mainenance for each nerve-wracking hour of flight; I share memories with people who ride both over and under the waves in service to their country. For me, the lack of governmental support for our armed forces during the Chretien era is intensely personal.

I'm not a right-wing nut job. Ask the folks who comment at SDA or The Shotgun if I'm even a conservative in their eyes. Ask Greg, or Timmy, or Declan, or Flea, or Alan, or James, or Pogge, or Jim just how far out on the xenophobic spittle-flecked fascist right-wing I am. Ask Treehugger, a gentleman who was honest enough to change his mind publicly after he heard both sides of this story, how extreme I am. My views are right of the Canadian mean, to be sure, but for Kinsella to lump me in with the 'hater' crowd is low.

I have a good friend whose wife used to work for Kinsella. She swears he's a decent guy. I used to link to him in the lefties section of my blogroll because I thought so too. This incident changed my mind, and his continuing effort to smear me and misrepresent my words just reinforces how wrong I was about the man.

He writes that he wanted to find me and take a shot. I almost saved him the trouble by knocking on his door myself. But talking big on a blog is easy. So is suing someone when you're a lawyer.

Enough of the spin, Warren. Enough of the asinine accusations and exaggerations. Get over yourself.

Babble off.

Monday, October 03, 2005

With a whimper, not a bang...

Babble on.

As at least one of you has noticed - thanks Sean - my rate of posting has dropped off somewhat over the course of the past month or so. To nil. So while I reserve the right to flip-flop like a trout in the bottom of your fishing-boat, I'm going to call it quits for now.

I'll leave you with a joke I heard this morning:

Donald Rumsfeld is briefing President Bush one morning, and gives what he thinks is a better than usual casualty report: "Mr. President, we lost three Brazilian soldiers in Iraq yesterday."

Dubya's jaw drops and his face grows ashen. Rummy is shocked, and asks the President what's wrong. Confused, Bush looks around at his advisors and replies:

"Well damn, Rummy, I may not be able to count that high, but I know even one brazillion is a lot of men."

Ah well, you get what you pay for. Thanks for putting up with me for so long.

Babble off.