Tuesday, July 31, 2007

"I Have No Plans At This Time..."

This blog uses a terrific service called Site Meter to collect statistics regarding our blog traffic and to tell us how some of our readers find us.
Checking our site stats is a regular hobby, I must confess. It is often fascinating.
Yesterday, for example, we had a visitor from Thornhill, Ontario who found Wise Law Blog using the Google search string below:

Thanks, Thornhill reader, but with regard to Ottawa, I have no such plans at this time...

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto
Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

More Americans Moving to Canada

From CBC:

The number of Americans admitted to Canada last year reached a 30-year high, with a 20 per cent increase over the previous year and nearly double the number that arrived in 2000.

The results of a survey, conducted by the Association for Canadian Studies, also revealed that the so-called "brain drain" of Canada appears to be narrowing.

The survey found that 10,942 Americans came to Canada in 2006, compared to just over 9,262 in 2005. In 2000, 5,828 came to the country.

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

The Worst Canadian?

I don't think so...


- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Sunday Funny - Bush In Charge

Vice President Dick Cheney underwent successful surgery heart surgery yesterday to replace a battery in his pacemaker.
As events broke, Wonkette brought the unfolding news to an anxious America:

The procedure is just the latest of so very many operations for Cheney, who has already racked up “four heart attacks, quadruple bypass surgery, two artery-clearing angioplasties and an operation to implant the defibrillator.”

During Bush’s time as “president” tomorrow morning, he is expected to play with his dogs and maybe work on his fort in the back yard.

Vice” president Dick Cheney had his robotic heart replaced this morning, apparently without complications, and “resumed his normal schedule” of whatever he does on Saturday afternoons — probably reading the new Harry Potter book, working in the garden, or bombing some Muslims somewhere, possibly in Iran this time.

While Cheney was under the knife, George W. Bush enjoyed two hours of being “in charge.” White House spokesman Tony Snow said Bush sat in Cheney’s chair, pretended to talk to “big important people” and “the King of China” on the telephone, appointed his dogs to the Supreme Court, and had “secret service agents” accompany him to lunch at an Applebee’s in suburban Maryland, where he enjoyed a “presidential burger” with curly fries and then had some ice cream.

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

Friday, July 27, 2007

Quote of the Day

Matthew Yglesias:

There have been some inappropriate pardons in the past, but pardoning your own subordinates for official misconduct undertaken in support of your political goals has opened up a whole new can of worms. Gonzalez and anyone else can lie, stonewall, refuse to comply as much as they like, secure in the knowledge that not a single person will serve a single minute in prison for anything they do on George W. Bush's behalf.
- Garry J. Wise, Toronto
Visit our Website: www.wiselaw.net

A Most 'Difficult' Witness:

To other lawyers out there - how would you handle a witness like this?

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Condi, Then and Now

From SFGate:

I remember the heady days for Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice...

How things change.

A few months ago, she decided to write an opinion piece about Lebanon. She enlisted John Chambers, chief executive officer of Cisco Systems as a co-author, and they wrote about public/private partnerships and how they might be of use in rebuilding Lebanon after last summer's war. No one would publish it.

Think about that. Every one of the major newspapers approached refused to publish an essay by the secretary of state. Price Floyd, who was the State Department's director of media affairs until recently, recalls that it was sent to the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times and perhaps other papers before the department finally tried a foreign publication, the Financial Times of London, which also turned it down.

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto
Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

The Democratic "YouTube" Debate

The full debate video is here. Here's one clip to start:

Update: TPM has now posted a highlights real.
- Garry J. Wise, Toronto
Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

Will Facebook Overtake Google?

Ann All, the writer of this article from itbusinessedge, thinks so:

Despite the Internet’s famously short attention span, Google has been the most buzz-worthy tech company for nearly a decade. Computerworld recently named the search giant the top e-commerce development of the past 10 years.

Yet, now Google appears to be in danger of losing that status to Facebook.

Once merely an also-ran to MySpace, Facebook is now being touted as “a do-everything site with the potential to devour the whole Internet,” according to a Slate article. The article speculates that Facebook wants to become “an all-encompassing portal” similar to MyYahoo or iGoogle.

While that prediction sounded radical enough when first published in late June, it now seems almost laughably small-potatoes in light of the current speculation following Facebook’s acquisition of Parakey, a Web-based operating system created by two co-founders of Firefox.

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto
Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

Sunday, July 22, 2007

The Wise Law Blogroll

It's long overdue, but I have finally added a Blogroll of the writers and blogs I regularly frequent.
These outstanding sites are truly worthy of your support. I highly recommend all of them.
Andrew Sullivan
John Cole - Balloon Juice
Cathie From Canada
Crooks and Liars
Daily Kos
Glen Greenwald
Seeing the Forest - Dave Johnson
Talking Points Memo
The Raw Story
Taylor Marsh
The Debatable Land
Think Progress
Welcome to Pottersville
James Wolcott - Vanity Fair
Matthew Yglesias

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

MSNBC: Islam in America

From Islam in America: A Special Report - Newsweek:

'Great question,' answered the president. 'I'm confident your answer is, 'I love living in America, the land of the free and the home of the brave, the country where you can come and ask the president a question and a country where—' Are you a Muslim?'

'Yes,' answered Siddiq.

'Where you can worship your religion freely. It's a great country where you can do that.'

It was a good answer, says Siddiq, but not enough for him—not when he, a financial adviser at a major investment bank, is afraid to use the bathroom on flights because he doesn't want to frighten his fellow passengers as he walks down the aisle.

He thinks anti-Muslim sentiment in the country is getting worse, not better.

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

Tammy Faye Bakker-Messner (1942 - 2007)

Tammy Faye Messner has died.

Love her or not, it is undeniable that she caught - and held - the public's imagination for more than three decades.

Was her allure simply in her calculated elevation of overarching sentimentality to an art form? Or perhaps, was she more the perpetual "victim," faithfully surviving one "unbearable" adversity after another - always, of course, in full public view?

Tammy Faye Bakker-Messner had a unique ability to engender sympathy and action - long before the PTL scandals, it was her chronic tears that drew attention to her trademark mascara, running down her cheeks, as she cried plaintively for help - and at times, money.

As an icon of 1970's and 80's, she carved a lasting place for herself in the world of celebrity camp, and to her very end, maintained that slightly outrageous, ever-enduring public persona.

True to form, her final appearance on Larry King last week will leave us with another unforgettable, if garish, image of an icon staying "in role" while facing her end with remarkable grace.

She was an original.

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto
Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

Friday, July 20, 2007

Marriage and Children of Divorce

I do not consider this breaking news, by any stretch, but Australian research confirms the high risk of marital breakdown faced by children of divorce:

The propensity toward divorce does not lie mainly in the genes, new research suggests.

An Australian study of twins and their grown children finds that family history plays a key role, however. Adults whose own parents had split had nearly twice the risk of going through a divorce themselves, the researchers found.

But there is no "gene" for divorce, so to speak, said lead researcher Brian M. D'Onofrio, an Indiana University psychologist. "Genetic factors that influence both generations do not [significantly] account for that increased risk," he said.

The findings are published in the August issue of the Journal of Marriage and Family.
Prior studies have found that a higher percentage of divorced people come from families split by divorce. That raised the question of whether genes, "could account for the increased risk of marital instability in offspring of divorce," D'Onofrio explained. His team is the first "to test out that possibility and, in large part, rule out the role of genetic factors," he said.

The research did not completely eliminate all genetic factors, however. According to D'Onofrio, about 66 percent of the increased risk for divorce appears to stem from the simple fact of a person's parents having been divorced. The remaining 34 percent of the risk seemed to be tied to genetic factors, as well as other factors affecting parents and children.

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Propaganda and the Press

Cartoonist Tom Tomorrow nails it at Salon.com:

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

High Court Rules: Update on the Playfoots

I wrote about the Playfoots last month.
Yahoo News has an update:

LONDON (Reuters) - A teen-ager whose teachers had stopped her wearing a "purity ring" at school to symbolize her commitment to virginity lost a High Court fight against the ban Monday.

... Playfoot's parents are key members of the British arm of the American chastity campaign group the Silver Ring Thing, a religious group which urges abstinence among young people.

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Take the Live Earth Pledge

Take the Live Earth Pledge:


  1. To demand that my country join an international treaty within the next 2 years that cuts global warming pollution by 90% in developed countries and by more than half worldwide in time for the next generation to inherit a healthy earth;

  2. To take personal action to help solve the climate crisis by reducing my own CO2 pollution as much as I can and offsetting the rest to become "carbon neutral;"

  3. To fight for a moratorium on the construction of any new generating facility that burns coal without the capacity to safely trap and store the CO2;

  4. To work for a dramatic increase in the energy efficiency of my home, workplace, school, place of worship, and means of transportation;

  5. To fight for laws and policies that expand the use of renewable energy sources and reduce dependence on oil and coal;

  6. To plant new trees and to join with others in preserving and protecting forests; and,

  7. To buy from businesses and support leaders who share my commitment to solving the climate crisis and building a sustainable, just, and prosperous world for the 21st century.
Don't miss Melissa Etheridge in New York, and Yusuf (Cat Stevens) in Germany.
- Garry J. Wise, Toronto
Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

President Bush Commutes Scooter Libby's Jail Sentence

An explanation from TPM:

I havent seen this noted but I think the reason for the commutation is that a pardon would mean that Libby was no longer exposed to criminal sanctions and thus had no Fifth Amendment privilege. As it stands he has a fine and probation at stake during the pendency of the appeal which insulates him (and Bush and Cheney) from having to answer questions before Congress.

Editorial boards at leading newspapers across America weigh in.
An eventual, full pardon is apparently still on the table (but only if Libby asks for it). Bush spokesman Tony Snow:

"The reason I will say I'm not going to close a door on a pardon is simply this: that Scooter Libby may petition for one," Snow said. "But the president has done what he thinks is appropriate to resolve this case."

"There is always a possibility - or there's an avenue open - for anybody to petition for consideration of a pardon," he added.

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto
Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

Monday, July 02, 2007

Colbert: "Profiles in Timing"

On Senator Lugar's about-face on the war: "Months in the making, weeks in the writing."

Colbert has some choice comments for leaders with the "courage to wait."

Crooks and Liars has the video, also found at Comedy Central.

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto
Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/

"Michael Moore Saved My Home"

If you haven't yet seen the video attacking Ontario's health care system in yesterday's post, check it out after watching the one below:

(h/t Susie Madrak, who originally posted this video)
- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

Visit our Website: http://www.wiselaw.net/