Bali conference partisan and ideological?

The media narrative of the Bali climate conference has been the “obstructionism” and “sabotage” of the talks by Canada’s government (note to Stephane Dion: outside of our borders, the “Harper/Conservative government” becomes your government too. Canadians have given the Conservative Party, not you, a mandate to speak for us on the world stage.)

We’ve heard reports that Environment Minister John Baird has been so audacious to even suggest that future climate treaties include caps on developing nations such as China and India, a truly offensive suggestive shared by the unoffensive new Prime Minister of Australia Kevin Rudd. We’ve heard that Baird “ran away” from a meeting of environmental activists, “Canadian youth” and Svend Robinson!

CTV reports:

Baird was supposed to explain Canada’s position at a meeting with non-governmental activists attending the conference. He showed up for the meeting, but quickly left before speaking.

Canadian activists and others waited for the minister to return. But they were later told Baird had to attend negotiations and would not be back.

“The minister who was supposed to address us was AWOL. He ran away,” said Olivier Lavoie of the Canadian Youth in Action.

Lavoie said the minister probably did not want to confront young activists critical of Canada’s stand.

How can Baird turn a blind eye to good people that are non-partisan, non-ideological and simply concerned about the coming worldwide devastation?

Unreported by CTV and undeclared by Lavoie is this “activist” and leader of the “Canadian Youth in Action” was also president of the Liberal campus club at McGill.

So was Baird simply avoiding a meeting with people who see so much green that they see red when they see blue?

Was he avoiding a partisan ambush by a group of NDP and Liberal activists?

When can we get some honest reporting on the merits of Baird’s plan and what interests some have in blocking it?

At its core, Canada and Australia’s vision for a future climate treaty is rooted in environmental concern.

The intent of Baird’s position is that no matter what country in which you emit CO2, you pay the same cost. All worldwide CO2 would be declared equal if Baird and Rudd had their way. However, the intent of “social” environmental activists is to shift the burden on developed nations. If China and India and other “developing” countries get a better deal on their CO2 emissions, economic development and manufacturing of companies headquartered in Canada or the US, for example, will shift to developing countries because of their lower CO2 costs. The effect of this is redistribution of wealth.

If we are concerned about CO2 emissions, then all CO2 should be costed the same. If it is not, the effect will be the creation of CO2 havens. CO2 production will be shifted rather than reduced. Perhaps what Baird is doing is calling on the warming warriors to show their cards. Is all of this noise really about CO2 or is it about the redistribution of wealth and production?

Facebook statistics

Everybody and their brother knows about Facebook these days. Whether finding old high school classmates, building one’s professional network, or sharing photos among friends, Facebook has many uses to millions of users. There’s a new feature on the website for advertisers that allows the ad buyer the ability of progressively narrowing down a target audience by selecting and excluding demographic data. The side benefit of this is that we can parse Facebook’s user data and get a better understanding of its audience and reach.

Here are the top countries represented on Facebook (users):
1. United States 19,951,900
2. Canada 7,361,720
3. United Kingdom 6,407,580
4. Australia 1,498,320
5. South Africa 605,820
6. France 429,540
7. Norway 891,480
8. Sweden 827,940
9. Mexico 393,940
10. Egypt 376,480
11. Columbia 359,220
12. Turkey 327,760
13. India 287,500
14. Germany 259,760
15. New Zealand 208,000
16. United Arab Emirates 188,600
17. Singapore 180,660
18. Spain 178,900
19. Lebanon 163,720
20. Ireland 131,660
21. Italy 121,000
22. Saudi Arabia 115,980
23. Pakistan 115,240
24. Netherlands 109,840
25. Switzerland 99,600
26. Malaysia 98,060
27. Japan 95,340
28. Israel 94,180
29. China 83,640
30. South Korea 51,080
31. Dominican Republic 33,060

In Canada, the male/female breakdown is:
2,507,620 male
3,431,280 female

The top cities in Canada are:
1,326,280 Toronto
549,600 Montreal
346,020 Vancouver
317,700 Halifax
275,820 Ottawa
186,620 Winnipeg
432,060 Calgary
365,120 Edmonton

In Canada, the political breakdown is:
618,240 Liberal
236,540 Moderate
281,840 Conservative

The male/female breakdown of these figures are (m/f)
282,220/291,300 Liberal
126,360/94,480 Moderate
158,020/104,460 Conservative

As one goes through college/university in Canada, does one become more or less Liberal or Conservative?
Conservative:
Freshmen 3,420
Sophomores 4,300
Juniors 4,440
Seniors 4,760

conservativesovertime.jpg
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Liberal:
9,740 Fresmen
13,160 Sophomores
14,500 Juniors
16,840 Seniors

liberalsovertime.jpg

Note the slopes on both graphs. The Conservative graph has a slope of y=416x meaning that as each year goes by, with all else being equal, we can infer that the university experience produces 416 more Conservatives each year of school. Likewise, the slope of the Liberal graph is y=2264x meaning that if our assumptions are the same, we can infer that the university experience produces 2264 more Liberals per year of the undergraduate experience. It would be beneficial to measure the data over four years, but we can hypothesize from this data that universities are having the effect of producing Liberals over Conservatives at 4:1 per year.

(Note that these figures are taken for individuals at the current time, a changing trend is only inferred. All we know for sure is there are more partisans/idelogues in both camps in later years of undergraduate.)

Let’s take a look at how politics breaks down at each Canadian university
University Liberal/Moderate/Conservative
Acadia 360/80/60

acadia-graph.jpg
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Bishop’s 180/40/60

bishops-graph.jpg
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Brock 1,040/320/420

brock-graph.jpg
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Carleton 2,340/740/800

carleton-graph.jpg
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Concordia 1,060/240/120

concordia-graph.jpg
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Dalhousie 1,280/260/280

dalhousie-graph.jpg
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Lakehead 360/120/120

lakehead-graph.jpg
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Laurentian 440/100/100

laurentian-graph.jpg
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McGill 3,360/720/300

mcgill-graph.jpg
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McMaster 2,000/660/760

mcmaster-graph.jpg
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Mount Allison 440/60/60

mounta-graph.jpg
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Nipissing 220/80/80

nipissing-graph.jpg
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Queen’s University 2,220/500/600

queensu-graph.jpg
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Royal Military College 60/60/180

rmc-graph.jpg
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Ryerson 2,020/560/360

ryerson-graph.jpg
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St. Francis Xavier 480/100/180

stfx-graph.jpg
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Simon Fraser University 1,400/440/340

sfu-graph.jpg
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Trent 800/160/180

trent-graph.jpg
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University of Alberta 2,340/900/1,340

ualberta-graph.jpg
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University of British Columbia 3,120/920/620

ubc-graph.jpg
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University of Calgary 1,220/540/840

ucalgary-graph.jpg
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University of Guelph 2,060/460/500

uguelph-graph.jpg
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University of Lethbridge 480/200/440

ulethbridge-graph.jpg
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University of New Brunswick 800/180/220

unb-graph.jpg
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University of Ottawa 2,440/640/620

uottawa-graph.jpg
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U Regina 220/40/80

uregina-graph.jpg
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University of Saskatchewan 620/200/380

usask-graph.jpg
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University of Sherbrooke 80/100/20* (* fewer than 20)

usherbrooke-graph.jpg
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University of Toronto 5,560/1,740/1,140

uoft-graph.jpg
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University of Victoria 1,300/400/280

uvic-graph.jpg
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University of Waterloo 2,380/840/680

waterloo-graph.jpg
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University of Western Ontario 2,820/760/980

uwo-graph.jpg
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University of Windsor 1,140/280/340

uwindsor-graph.jpg
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Wilfrid Laurier University 1,540/420/480

wlu-graph.jpg
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York University 3,520/980/700

york-graph.jpg
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As for the ratio of Liberal students:Conservative students?
Here are the top five (the most Liberal schools in the country by this measure):
McGill 11.2:1
Concordia 8.8:1
Mount Allison 7.3:1
Acadia 6:1
Ryerson 5.6:1

And the bottom five (the most Conservative schools in the country by this measure):
Royal Military College 0.33:1
University of Lethbridge 1.1:1
University of Calgary 1.5:1
University of Saskatchewan 1.6:1
University of Alberta 1.7:1

A bit more about the methodology:
This data was taken from this Facebook page on October 17th, 2007. All data is self-declared by individuals with Facebook profiles.

UPDATE: It appears that Facebook has disabled the feature.

Globe and Mail causing trouble?

The Globe and Mail recently published an article on Monday about appointments to the Judicial Advisory Committee, a group of volunteer individuals that help select a pool of candidates for consideration for the Minister of Justice.

The Globe notes the following,

At least 16 of 31 recent appointments to the panels have Conservative party ties, according to a survey by The Globe and Mail. Others, while not directly linked to the party, have expressed right-of-centre views about the proper role of the judiciary.

Canada’s “newspaper of record” also goes on to cite seven separate authorities on the issue decrying the sure first steps to the implementation of a radical right-wing conspiracy in Canada. Stephane Dion is quoted:

“The only reason he’s stacking the committees is to select judges who will cater to his neo-conservative agenda,” said Mr. Dion, demanding an end to what he called a “blatant” effort to politicize the judiciary.”

Gilles Duceppe, the NDP, a University of Ottawa law professor, the Dean of Osgoode law school, the president of the Canadian bar association, even Beverly McLachlin expressed “concern” when the Globe and Mail contacted them to comment on its narrative. One doesn’t get the sense of balance from the article.

Partisan appointments to a panel which makes recommendations to the Minister of Justice?

On closer inspection, one discovers that the Globe’s math is a bit of a stretch and designed to be alarmist. I count over 115 names on the Judicial Advisory Committee and the names have been fully disclosed on the website for a month.

So why does the Globe deem this story to be newsworthy and why now? Well, it all fits into a narrative that the evil Conservatives don’t believe in the Charter and that if we aren’t vigilant, it’ll be gone tomorrow.

In fact, the Globe article comes during a week-long feature in the National Post about the Charter to coincide with a conference at McGill that focuses upon the “Charter @ 25″.

Is the Globe and Mail trying to fan the flames on the issue of judicial appointments?

One wonders if the Globe is as vigilant reporting on partisan appointments to the bench (rather than a non-binding advisory committee). Consider, for example, this list of judicial appointments.

Also, if one digs a little deeper into previous Judicial Advisory Committees, we discover that partisan Liberals have previously packed the JACs under Liberal justice ministers. Here’s a list:

From 2004-2006
Irene Lewis
New Brunswick Women’s Liberal Association (1994-1998)

James Hatton
Federal Liberal Candidate in the 1988 Federal Election (North Vancouver)

Sharon Appleyard
President of 2005-2006 Executive-Liberal Party of Canada (Manitoba)

Elizabeth Wilson
Member of interim peers panel for Liberal federal candidates 2006

Roger Yachetti
Donated $128.10 to Liberal party of Canada in 1999

Karolyn M. Godfrey
(P.E.I)-Liberal donation $486.80 in 1999

Marc Letellier
$1000 donation to Liberal party of Canada in 2000

Fernand Deveau
$128.33 donation to Liberal party of Canada in 1998

Simon Potter
prominent Liberal activist as well as being a lobbyist and counsel for Imperial.

Anil Pandila
Donated $390.12 to the Liberal party of Canada

From 2002-2004
Claudette Tardif
Currently a Liberal Senator (Alberta) – appointed by Paul Martin

Lou Salley
Former Chretien B.C. organizer, B.C. organizer for Dion in 2006

Rodney Pacholzuk
Former Organization Chair for the Kelowna Federal Liberal Riding Association

George Cooper
New Brunswick Campaign Manager for the Ignatieff Campaign

Annette Marshall
Co-chair of the 1993 Liberal Election Campaign – Nova Scotia

Lorraine Hamilton
Former President of the Burlington Federal Liberal Association and EA to Paddy Torsney, M.P.

Roberta Hubley
Former P.E.I. Liberal MLA

Everett Roche
Lawrence MacAulay’s Official Agent

Yes, these are partisans who served on judicial advisory committees. As I wrote on Macleans.ca, I’m still looking for the Globe and Mail article concerning these (Liberal) partisans. I don’t think that I’ll find it.

Can we instead thank these volunteers, regardless of political stripe, for their commitment to public service?