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Outrage fatigue

The talk of the Canadian blogosphere today is Immigration Minister Joe Volpe accusing the Conservatives of being just the same as the Ku Klux Klan:

The Opposition party is made up of racists, Volpe said yesterday, calling members recognizable "notwithstanding that they don't have their cowl and their cape."

"The Klan looks like it's still very much alive," the minister added. Volpe made the comments in response to a magazine graphic in which Liberals are depicted as The Liberanos, a mocking reference to the television Mafia show The Sopranos.

A pair of Conservative MPs -- Lee Richardson and Werner Schmidt -- were photographed this week pointing to the graphic from the Western Standard magazine.

The graphic depicts Jean Chretien, Paul Martin, Alfonso Gagliano and sponsorship adman Jean Brault, arms-crossed and lined up in a stereotypical mobster group shot.

The shot is labelled 'The Liberanos -- Canadian Politics Redefined' in bold, red letters.

Volpe blasted the two Tory MPs for using the graphic as a political prop.

"I think these are a couple of fine, upstanding members of the new Conservative Klan," Volpe said, holding up the picture outside the Commons.

What a dope. It's a totally outrageous statement and he really should resign as a Minister of the Crown for such crass stupidity. He represents the government of Canada, and he shouldn't be making such hateful comments about his fellow Parliamentarians. But what I find most interesting in this story is the heroic leaps in logic Volpe took to be in a position to make these comments. Volpe was outraged, so he says, because he is of Italian heritage and somehow he interprets this poster as a racial slur. But how? It makes no sense. A few years ago, some Italian-Americans (and Italian-Canadians presumably) were offended by The Sopranos as yet another representation of their community being home to organized crime. I hope they've gotten over it by now, but the grievance community has long memories. Today The Sopranos are a part of our collective popular culture; their name is shorthand for the well-connected and corrupt modern mob. So all this poster is doing is comparing the Liberal party to gangsters -- perfectly acceptable (and apt) political satire.

Volpe knows all this of course. His 'anger' and 'outrage' are just a platform from which to make these absolutely unacceptable comments. It's mystifying to me that anyone could take such nonsense seriously, but the Liberals seem to do this kind of thing frequently (remember the crosses burning 'as we speak'?) so they must believe this kind of attitude benefits them. Keep calling your opponents racists over the flimsiest of pretences and for some it will stick. This kind of tactic will continue until the default press reaction to the 'victim card' is skepticism rather than sympathy. I'd love to have heard a reporter say to Volpe after his outburst, "What? You mean you're this offended that two Conservatives smiled at a poster comparing members of your party to characters on a TV gangster show? And just because you are of Italian heritage? How stupid do you think we are?" I won't hold my breath though...

Not that the Conservatives are immune from this kind of shameless posturing.

Conservative MP Jason Kenney said that as a Roman Catholic, he found Volpe's remarks offensive because the major targets of the Ku Klux Klan in Canada had been Roman Catholics.
Oh cry me a river, Jason. Being called a racist should be enough for anyone to be offended, but you're offended because Volpe brought back the painful memories of -- what? -- the vicious Klan attacks you survived in your youth? Gimme a break.

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Comments

Well, you tell me sir,

Do you agree with Kate McMillian's proposal about Aboriginals, wherein she posited that

"Canada needs institutions to lock up Aboriginal activists and apologists"

What about when she was advocating for Canada to recreate residential schools for Indian kids?

It's awfully hard not to consider the CPC racists when people such as yourself openly support and condone racists like Kate McMillan.

Huh?

...

I say again: Huh?

You want to provide some links for your quotes? Because they sound pretty bogus to me.

Just about as bogus as your logic. Am I, as a supporter of the Conservative party, supposed to be responsible for everything said by all other supporters of the party? I think for myself. As you should, instead of relying on the talking points for some sleazy underground Liberal smear campaign...

It's only Meaghan Champion-Williams.

Think Joe Volpe in drag. Suffering from extreme water retention.

Her'es the link she always neglects to provide.

http://westernstandard.blogs.com/shotgun/2004/12/normans_spectat_9.html

There's a reason she doesn't - because it's an example of herself in five-alarm troll meltdown.

Before this episode (which got her banned from the Shotgun) she spent days accusing Kathy Shaidle of lying about her writing resume.

Yes, go read Kate's comments about "Locking up Aboriginal activists and apologists" - and just google her name and "residential schools" - to find her comments about that.

Not to mention her sweet genocidal suggestions about Angolans in Africa.

Can't keep your facts straight can you Kate?
I was banned from the Western Standard after insulting you for your racist genocidal remarks about Aboriginals back in the first week of January. The cock-up about Kathy Shaidle's resume didn't occur until the end of January.

Keep up your lies and disinformation Kate. It looks great on you.

"Am I, as a supporter of the Conservative party, supposed to be responsible for everything said by all other supporters of the party?" --

When you link to her, and thus promote her blog, yes, I would say you do "support" her and her advocacy of racist shit. But be my guest. It's fun watching the hypocricy of the CPC on this issue.

It makes for interesting fodder for the upcoming election don't you think?

But by all means, keep supporting, condoning and sanctioning your genocidal racist *friend*.

Tell me, are you are "inspired" by her, as Monte Solberg is?

You know, it's ironic that you picked this post -- in which I complain how stupid it is to make wild accusations about racism where none exists -- to make wild accusations about racism where none exists! I've read the comments from Kate that have you so worked up (or have given you the excuse to pretend to be worked up) and it's clear they're made faceciously.

If you want to continue your online feud with her, I'll ask you to take it outside. Thanks.

Interesting - she copies and pastes the same comment s over and over

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