It’s election season in Ontario, and this means two things: 1. We’re having an election soonish. 2. Each major party is releasing asinine attack ads about each other, and it’s pretty funny. Why do political parties feel that it is enough to make unsubstantiated claims about each other in a bid to get elected? That’s the equivalent of a teenage girl spreading rumours about another girl she considers competition for prom queen. (Is that still a thing?!) I wish political parties would stop chirping each other and start telling us what their plans are. And by plans I mean actual plans, not Hudak’s promise to cut eleventy billion dollars in taxes while adding 8 trillion jobs. Come on man!

But most of all, I hate that Facebook knows I’d vote for Kathleen Wynne if by some astonishing turn of events, I do indeed vote. I want to let her know, however, that she’s squandering any support I have for her with her stupid stupid ads. Exhibit A:

Screen Shot 2014-06-04 at 9.12.07 PM

That’s a very bold claim. How did she arrive at those numbers? Did they record him plotting in his underground lair? Thanks for the info, guys.

Screen Shot 2014-06-04 at 9.09.50 PM

They nailed the target demographic with this one. NOT. Just because I go to bed at ten and watch Golden Girls doesn’t mean I am a senior citizen. Does Kathleen Wynne have a  plan to help me be employed securely? Because that would be a nice start.

Screen Shot 2014-05-28 at 8.36.06 PM

What does this even mean? If I had clicked this link, I’d put money on it leading me to a Liberal Party zombie attack plan. Only Kathleen Wynne has a plan for the zombie apocalypse – other leaders have no plan. This is exactly the kind of vague and menacing ad that makes election season fun. I wonder what this is on the NDP site then. They claim it’s a plan, but Kathleen Wynne knows better.

I’m not trying to pick on the Liberals though. The NDP and PCs have been just as boneheaded–if not worse–in their campaigns.

ndp-online-ad

Some genius thought it would be nice to remind Canadians that all our hockey teams suck and have ended their season with this gem. My favourite part of this is that Wynne is red like the devil. The subtext reads “Put Wynne back in hell where she belongs.” It’s so creepy.

In a move that reached the all-time pinnacle of desperation, today the NDP and PCs each bought ad space on the entire covers of popular newspapers so they could print fake headlines and made-up stats. My favourite is the NDP’s informative chart on the cover of Metro:

Screen Shot 2014-06-04 at 9.52.29 PM

Really? Did they run that poll on their website? How incredibly idiotic–don’t put that on the front page of a newspaper (though calling Metro a newspaper is generous). The NDP may be hurting itself more than helping–how does the working Canadian’s party have enough cheddar to buy TWO newspaper covers? I’m not going to say because of unions, but it’s because of unions. Yet I’m willing to be that unions representing employees in the industrial sector are not well-represented on the NDP’s bankroll. But I digress…

I worked on an NDP campaign in Alberta, and I don’t recall planting any fake polls on the covers of newspapers. These fools are making the PCs look awesome by comparison. And that’s no trivial feat!

After a short hiatus spent freaking out, spending time with friends and family, and watching Star Trek, I am back. A lot of weird and awful things happened in my absence, and just before I put 2013 (FAR) behind me, I would like to discuss the weirdest of these. It seems that over the break a handful of countries have racked up some bizarre headlines. While this is good for some laughs, in the end, we are all losers in this contest.

image: YouTube

Egypt

After the year they’ve had, Egyptians could probably use all the laughs they can get, so it’s unfortunate that one of the country’s foremost comedic characters, Abla Fahita, is currently under investigation for terrorism due to comments she made in a phone-company commercial. Even more unfortunate is the fact that Abla Fahita is a puppet. Next Big Bird will be busted for money laundering, along with Elmo for….wait, that already happened.

Political analyst Ziad Akl sums it up nicely: “As stupid as it is, it’s very telling.” All I can say is this puppet is cute as shit and probably not the biggest threat to Egypt’s stability. But you never know I guess…

image: NKNews.org

North Korea

Just everything.

A few weeks ago North Korea sent perennial arch-nemesis South Korea a fax notifying them of the “merciless retaliation without warning” they would receive in return for allowing anti-NK demonstrations. So NK sent SK a fax to warn of a retaliation without warning? How silly. Even more so because no one has sent a fax in like ten years. I bet an intern or admin assistant received the fax, because no one important would ever be in charge of monitoring the fax machine for war threats.

How did SK respond to this grave security threat? In the words of the Washington Post’s Max Fisher, “South Korea, on Friday, turned around and sent the North Koreans a threatening fax right back.” Well played.

In other North Korea news, it recently emerged that dictator Kim Jong-un did not feed the uncle whom he had killed to a pack of dogs. I love negative headlines like this: you can make up something crazy then write about how it didn’t happen. Of course, this particular headline is entirely plausible, so reporters felt justified in discussing its veracity.

And finally, Dennis Rodman and Kim Jong-un’s stomach-turning bromance is still firmly intact. I was raging today at headlines that documented Rodman’s “love” for the despot until I read this in the Telegraph:

Rodman told reporters at Beijing airport that he hoped the match could “open the doors” to “talk about certain things”.

“But I am not going to sit there and go ‘Hey guy, you are doing the wrong thing. That is not the right way to do it. He is my friend first… and I love him,” Rodman said, sprinkling his comments with expletives.

That sounds surprisingly promising, though Rodman has likely signed his own death certificate with that comment.

America

A lot of things have happened in the US over the holidays. But the only one I care about involves Clay Aiken and the House of Representatives. That’s right–the man who stunned us with his moving rendition of “Solitaire” is now setting his sights on politics.

He wouldn’t have to spend too much time on a policy platform, as all his wisest words have already been included in his songs. On NSA spying: “If I were invisible, then I could just watch you in your room.” On partisanship in Washington: “Solitaire’s the only game in town, every road that takes him, takes him down.” So real.

Let’s just hope Ruben Studdard isn’t planning to run as a Republican candidate…

Saudi Arabia

I don’t talk about these guys enough, mostly because it’s too depressing, but this story is bizarre enough that I have to share it. Yesterday human body parts fell out of the sky and into a Saudi intersection located in a residential area. It is speculated that they are the remains of a Beiruti migrant who hitched a ride on a plane’s landing gear in a desperate attempt to leave. Horrific.

So that one didn’t actually originate in Saudi Arabia, unlike my favorite story ever from there, in which the Hayaa (religious police) shut down an educational dinosaur exhibit in a mall on charges of immorality. This sparked a hilarious Twitter frenzy, with one user theorizing that the Hayaa was afraid that people would begin worshipping the dinosaurs instead of God. By far the most awesome story of 2013.

Mexico

The news coming out of Mexico is usually quite dismal, so the Washington Post‘s article about Mexico’s hangover prison El Torito really brightened my holiday. Mexicans who exceed the limit of 0.08 BAC must take “a strange little journey to a squat brick building next to a playground on the west side of town where they can sit — and sit, and sit — and think about what they’ve done.”

Perhaps it indicates the sad state of affairs in Mexico when a story about how a nation deals with its rampant alcoholism serves as a distraction from other graver problems such as drug-trafficking, poverty, and kidnapping.

Still, in a country with TV characters such as “Jaime el Duende,” a deeply alcoholic elf whose catchphrase is “I just pissed myself,” this is quite unsurprising. Perhaps Jaime should spend some time in Hangover Prison, or at least show poor Abla Fahita a good time.

Drones have been a hot-button issue for a while now–specifically, President Obama’s use of drone strikes to kill al-Qaeda militants–but the subject has taken on strange new dimensions in recent weeks. The unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) has a long and random history which includes sending everything from bats to balloons loaded with bombs into war zones. The UAV’s development was primarily motivated by human kind’s eternal desire to annihilate each other from a comfortable distance.

However, drones are set to begin serving a new, less pernicious function. Amazon’s Jeff Bezos announced this week that Amazon was developing a program that would see its products delivered to customers via UAV. The legal framework is not yet in place to handle such a practice, and there are numerous other logistical and technological kinks to iron out, but Bezos claims he will be ready to implement his plan by 2015. This is probably optimistic, but the technology is there and the Senate is working on the legal aspects. Mother Jones points out one silly flaw with this idea:

“All it could take is an effective drone-destroyer — a hunting rifle? laser weapon? laser pointer? — for a bandit to be watching your movies, wearing your slippers and making smoothies in your blender.”

Because bandits need smoothies too.

Another unconventional use of drones has arisen to address feral hog infestations in the Southern US. This practice has caused its own share of controversy among animal rights activists and hunting purists, but its efficacy is unmatched (pigs are clever and often elude humans). The ridiculousness of this entire situation seems to be lost on most people–how did six million feral pigs manage to storm the US, especially considering their lack of firearm regulation? While I realize that these hogs are a real problem for the Americans whose crops are damaged by these creatures, and that using drones to kill them is pretty inhumane, the image of drone strikes being used to eliminate them is absurd.

But the world in which we live is becoming more absurd each day. As advances in drone technology and self-driving cars converge, we are moving that much closer to The Jetsons’ world of flying cars with personalities of their own. I just hope they invent Rosie soon–my room’s a mess.

Drones have myriad other (less odd) uses too, among them protecting wildlife, assisting search-and-rescue missions, hurricane hunting, and 3D mapping. UAVs will likely prove to do more good than harm, but as in the case of many other technologies of our age, our society will have to grapple with the moral and legal implications of drones’ various uses. This will likely take many years. Until then, the would-be smoothie bandits will have to wait.

Foreign policy is a political minefield–the world is a big, complicated place, and naming countries things like Azerbaijan and Kyrgyzstan make embarrassment inevitable. Some politicians are uncommonly adept at navigating the intricacies of international relations, but many err on the side of disaster, giving us countless laughs as we vaguely wonder how these morons became responsible for representing us to the world.

In honor of these morons, I have compiled a list of some of my favorite foreign policy gaffes. But lest anyone think that I am looking down on them, I should say that I too have been known to deliver the occasional zinger. A few weeks ago I confused the President of Russia with poutine, a Quebecois delicacy consisting of fries, cheese curds, and gravy. Also, one of my rambling diatribes somehow ended with me comparing myself to Gandhi (because my life has been long and difficult, according to me). I guess we all have these moments…just for some, they are not so much moments as a way of life.

Image: Carsten Koall/Getty Images

Mitt Romney = Foreign Policy Gaffe

Mitt Romney didn’t invent the foreign policy gaffe, but he has personified it ever since his failed 2012 bid for the US presidency. My favorite nugget of wisdom from the Romney arsenal came when he attributed the fact that Israel is in better economic shape than Palestine to the Jewish culture. Never before has a politician so succinctly and deeply offended so many different groups of people while making himself sound like the biggest fool America has ever produced.

Other highlights of the trip include Romney questioning whether London was ready for the Olympics, calling Labour Party leader Ed Milliband “Mr Leader” (which is not a thing in England) after apparently forgetting his name, and congratulating Poland, which had an unemployment rate of 12%, on its flourishing economy. On the possibility of a conflict with Iran, he had this to say: “You sit down with your attorneys and [they] tell you what you have to do.” Holy shit. And he lost why….?

Gossip Guys

“I have to deal with him every day”

President Obama is probably still haunted by a hilarious private conversation he had with France’s former president Nicolas Sarkozy in 2011 regarding Israeli leader Binyamin Netanyahu. What’s the harm in a private exchange between colleagues, you ask? Their mics were on and everyone in the world heard the whole thing:

Sarkozy: I cannot stand him. He’s a liar.

Obama: You’re fed up with him, but I have to deal with him every day.

There’s something so charmingly schoolgirl-esque about this conversation that makes me laugh and laugh. Netanyahu probably begs to differ.

“Today I’ve signed legislation that will outlaw Russia forever”

In 1984 President Ronald Reagan put the Kremlin on alert with some inappropriate comments made during a sound check before a radio show. He proclaimed: “my fellow Americans, I’m pleased to tell you today that I’ve signed legislation that will outlaw Russia forever. We begin bombing in five minutes.” Russia’s leaders were not amused, and had to be convinced that this was only a little-known facet of Reagan’s twisted sense of humor.

“Esta vieja es peor que el tuerto”

Uruguayan President Jose Mujica learned about the importance of making sure one’s mic is off when an offhand comment he made–loosely translated as “this old lady is worse than the cross-eyed guy”–made it to the ears of the “old lady” in question. He had been referring to his Argentine counterpart Cristina Fernandez and her late husband Nestor Kirchner, who suffered from an eye condition. The comment was received in customary Argentine fashion–that is, with a healthy dose of drama and its own jaunty theme song.

https://i1.wp.com/media.theweek.com/img/dir_0090/45142_article_full/if-joe-biden-were-elected-the-nations-45th-president-hed-be-74-years-old-when-he-assumed-office.jpg

AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster

Joe Biden starts a war with Iran and kills the Irish PM’s mom

I  believe Joe Biden is an extraordinarily competent politician, but you wouldn’t know it from his long history of gaffes. At a campaign rally last year, supporters were surprised to learn that the US was at war with Iran–Biden asked them if they knew anyone serving in “Iraq or Iran.” Oops!

Similarly disturbing was when, during an introduction of the Irish PM, he mentioned that the PM’s mom (God rest her soul) used to live on Long Island. Trouble was she still did, and it was actually the PM’s dad who had passed away. And that’s why Obama keeps him behind the scenes now.

annotated.jpg

Matthew Yglesias

“Russia’s big and so is China”

This one’s almost too easy, but I’ve never enjoyed a challenge anyway. George W. Bush was famous for his quirky (read: asinine) comments, and, much to the consternation of Americans, he was loud and proud in the international arena. He greeted Italian PM Silvio Berlusconi with a cheery “Amigo! Amigo!”, clearly forgetting that Italian and Spanish are two separate languages. He famously gave German Chancellor Angela Merkel a creepy shoulder massage. He excused himself from his last G8 summit with the words “goodbye from the world’s biggest polluter” with an accompanying air punch as Gordon Brown and Nicolas Sarkozy stared in disbelief. Is it wrong to say I miss the humor that President Bush injected into US foreign policy? Probably, but I still do.

“The people of Peru deserve better”

Dick Cheney did nothing to help his relations with Venezuela when, while lamenting the harm that Hugo Chavez was doing, he declared that “the people of Peru deserve better.” Sure they do–and so do the people of Venezuela, the country that Chavez led. Not cool, dude.

I’m sorry if this list seems a little America/GOP-heavy, but they make themselves pretty easy targets. Any accounts of stupidity in other countries are welcome. Perhaps it seems wasteful to spend so much time on stupidity, but it will always be in the world; the only thing we can change is our reaction to it.

Ok so technically one can only jump the shark once–it’s supposed to be the moment in which things irrevocably go from good to bad, as in the show Happy Days, when Fonzi jumps over a shark wearing a pair of waterskis in a desperate ploy to keep the show relevant. How, then, does John Kerry keep on jumping that shark, always managing to recover only to jump it again?

As US Secretary of State, Kerry arguably has one of the most rhetorically demanding jobs in the world. One false word out of his mouth could literally blow up the world. So it’s more than a little mind-blowing to me the way Kerry often seems to think out loud, say his actual opinion, and stand up for something about which he feels strongly. His predecessor, Hillary Clinton, was the opposite–she flew under the radar for the most part.

“How do you ask a man to be the last man to die for a mistake?”

Kerry, on the other hand, has been making headlines since his 1971 Senate testimony that helped end the Vietnam war. Even back then he didn’t mince words; as msnbc’s Lawrence O’Donnell observes, “John Kerry didn’t play it safe when he testified against the war,” and called him “the most valuable kind of war hero, the hero who helps end the war.” Kerry’s bold speech called out several Democrats by name and could have spelled the end of his political career. Instead it earned him a place in the hearts of many Americans who had begun to feel like pawns in their country’s proxy wars against the USSR.

And actually Kerry’s display did come back to haunt him during his 2004 presidential campaign. A closer examination of his war record and his history of opposition to the Vietnam war ultimately culminated in a shark-jumping moment for his campaign. (It didn’t help that America was then embroiled in multiple wars as a result of the September 11th attacks.)

“I actually did vote for the $87 billion…before I voted against it”

But he rose again, like a Fonzi-phoenix from the shark-ashes…only to jump the shark again in 2006, when he was caught making a joke about soldiers serving in Iraq. (Kerry maintains that it was a misunderstanding.) But perhaps most damaging was his change of heart about the war in Iraq. He had initially voted in favor, but later changed his position, leading Republicans to ridicule his perceived lack of resolve. His awkward and contradictory attempts to explain his new position produced a bonanza for Republicans and a headache for Democrats, though I find it admirable that he had the courage to change his mind after receiving more information. Nevertheless, he jumped the shark with these explanations and lost all Democratic support for a 2008 presidential run.

Not quite BFF’s

“Sure, he could turn over every bit of his weapons to the international community”

Kerry learned an important lesson in diplomacy in September, when an offhand remark he made about how Syria’s leader, Bashar al-Assad, could avert a US-led attack was taken as a serious proposal. Within a few hours of Kerry making this comment, Russia and Syria were already making plans to turn over Syria’s arsenal of chemical weapons to international control. A blindsided and bewildered Kerry tried to backtrack, but the wheels were already in motion, and by the time UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon threw his support behind the proposal/”rhetorical argument,” there was no turning back. This led to headlines such as “Did John Kerry just accidentally find a workable solution for Syria?” I wish my mistakes worked out that well…

…and then it got stolen by the one single most organized entity in the state, which was the Brotherhood.

Kerry’s recent comments about Egypt don’t seem destined to have the same miraculous effect that his Syria arguments did. In an effort to make nice with Egypt’s army-backed administration, Kerry has been busy lambasting the Muslim Brotherhood for stealing the 2011 revolution from young, secular-minded Egyptians. His comments are a pretty obvious ploy to show that the US is not in cahoots with the Brotherhood, but they appear to have emboldened Egypt’s rulers to impose new restrictions on freedom of assembly. Now secular activists are being arrested–79 on Tuesday–and the embattled nation seems poised for another bout of devastating civil strife. By no means is Kerry responsible for all of this, but it is worth wondering if these events are in part a result of Egypt’s leaders feeling supported by the US. I’d say this is another shark-jumping moment for Kerry, though his comments aren’t the usual off-the-cuff Kerry accidents, but seem more like a change in the official stance of the US administration.

John Kerry will go down in history as an ambitious and impassioned Secretary of State. His major undertakings include the resolution of the Israel/Palestine conflict, helping broker a deal to end the Syrian civil war, and a comprehensive nuclear deal with Iran; given his reputation as the Energizer Bunny of international relations, he just might achieve these goals. Luckily for us, it seems that jumping the shark agrees with John Kerry.

Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press

Canada’s reaction to the nuclear deal in Iran served to highlight an ever-weakening area of the Harper Government: foreign policy. As I have pointed out a few times before, our policies convey a hawkishness that is uncharacteristic and unworthy of Canada’s peacekeeping record. And while it is great that Foreign Minister John Baird feels secure enough with Canada’s state of affairs to loudly point out other countries’ failings, most of what Canada does now on the international stage is an awkward combination of punching above our weight and refusing to engage in sane discourse with other international actors.

Take the aforementioned Iranian deal as an example. A day after it was closed, Baird held a press conference to inform Canadians (because the rest of the world didn’t care) that Canada is “deeply skeptical” of the deal and will keep all sanctions against Iran in place. “Dammit,” said the thousands of Canadians of Iranian descent who must keep their money in their mattresses because they are not permitted to have a bank account. “What sanctions?” asked Iranian officials, the least of whose concerns is Canada’s refusal to sell maple syrup and lumber to them.

But this isn’t the first time Canada has had words with Iran’s new government. A few weeks ago an op-ed published by Baird angered Iran’s administration so badly that Iran’s foreign minister called his comments “disrespectful” and “rude,” stating that they “show total lack of understanding, in fact, absolute ignorance with regard to the realities in Iran.” Yowza–he really pissed them off! But honestly, what did they expect from a man who suddenly cut all diplomatic ties with Iran a year ago?

image: kc schabaum

John Mundy, Canada’s former ambassador to Iran, even went on record saying Ottawa’s reaction to the deal was “unnecessarily hostile,” pointing out that negotiations are the only way to end the cycle in which “one side increases sanctions, the other side increases their nuclear program, and unless both sides agree to step back that eventually would lead to a confrontation.”

Good thing then that Canada was not involved in the negotiations and was probably not asked for input at any point in the process. This is indicative not so much of the world powers’ opinion of us, but rather of the new niche that Canada’s foreign policy as of late has engendered. Canada has abandoned any strategy and tact that diplomacy would require, and instead prefers to shout loudly from the sidelines. From the sidelines because we have been steadily withdrawing from any international body that we can, ostensibly due to our focus on improving our ties with other countries by way of multilateral trade agreements (but in reality so that John Baird can say whatever he wants without having to back it up with money).

But as Mr Mundy observed, diplomacy is not a game of chicken, but rather a willingness of both sides to make concessions while still (implicitly) insisting on core necessities. It is hardly espoused by Baird’s condescending attitude toward Iran–he tersely stated that “Iran has not earned the right to have the benefit of the doubt.” Fair enough, but how has Canada earned this right? By engaging in industrial espionage? By its Prime Minister declaring that Canada will not accept no for an answer on the Keystone Pipeline? Or perhaps by ominously threatening to withhold aid to Palestinians when their leader won a vote at the UN for Palestine to be recognized as a state?

In the worst sort of irony, Canada’s human rights record actually came under fire this past September in a UN review. Among the most vocal complainants were Belarus, Cuba, Russia, and–yep–Iran! Instead of accepting the recommendations like a responsible country, the Harper government lamented the entire practice of having its record reviewed by countries with less-than-stellar records. How productive. In fact, our response to these countries’ concerns led the UN to send an envoy to investigate our treatment of indigenous peoples. Baird was unavailable for comment as he was busy clinging to a shrub while the moral high ground he had been perched upon crumbled into the sea.

Baird has termed his fun new style of international (dis)engagement “made-in-Canada foreign policy,” as if Canada has somehow discovered the magic key to foreign policy that had eluded all of humanity until now. This is highly unlikely. Also unlikely is our government realizing that excessively hardline rhetoric and refusal to dialogue with…well, anyone, is an inaccurate representation of Canada’s national character (as well as an egregiously counterproductive modus operandi). The international community will only begin to listen to what Canada has to say when we make a genuine effort to engage with international organizations and stop making unconvincing threats. Until then, it’s the shrub for us.

Back in May when Mark Carney was leaving his post of Governor of the Bank of Canada, I warned him that the British press would probably make up all sorts of rumors about him. The most believable one pertained to his status as a warlock. As evidence of Carney’s warlockishness, I quoted a prominent political scientist, who had this to say about Carney: “No one gets to where that man is just by working hard and being good at their job. That’s just not how our world works.”

Now that Carney has settled into his post as Governor of England’s central bank, I am inclined to agree. The proof is in the Yorkshire pudding. What did England’s pre-Carney economy look like? Pretty crappy I’d say, even for Europe. Its highly integrated finance industry meant it was hit pretty hard by the 2008 sub-prime mortgage crisis–British banks lost around 12 billion pounds in 2007 alone, and was also victim of a weak European export market in the wake of the sovereign debt crisis.

About a year before Carney started at the Bank of England, the UK slipped back into recession and people were beginning to wonder if the unemployment rate would ever decline after hovering around 8% since 2009.

Now, a mere five months after Carney’s arrival, the BoE’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) is proclaiming that “in the United Kingdom, recovery has finally taken hold.” Growth projections are being revised up and stat-watchers have been surprised at the job creation numbers of the past few months. Which leads me to ask: What is this guy’s secret?!

image: Chris Wattie/Reuters

He didn’t technically do much. After his first meeting in August with the MPC, he issued an unclear, waffly statement saying that he would not raise interest rates until the unemployment rate dropped below 7%, unless inflation became a problem or financial stability were threatened. No one quite knew what to do with that, but soon everything started getting better. In fact, things started improving the second Carney took over at the BoE, leading the Financial Post to assert that he had quite possibly made the best-timed job switch ever. And now, says Carney, the UK economy is sailing along at escape velocity. (Though most economists would beg to differ, according to a survey by Bloomberg Businessweek.)

Sorry, Carney, I’m onto you. I’m not fooled by your adorable ploy to win Britons over by taking the Tube to work on your first day and getting lost. An entire economy serendipitously healed itself the moment it became your responsibility. It’s more than luck.

Wikipedia defines warlocks as beings who invoke “magic through their darkened soul,” while warning that “warlocks are often evil or chaotic in alignment.” More incriminating is the fact that “almost all of the warlock’s attack powers depend on charisma or constitution for accuracy and damage, with some powers gaining bonuses from intelligence.” Now we know why Carney is so powerful: his excessive charisma and intelligence have made him unstoppable.

Also suspect is the way the Carneys have miraculously avoided the usually intense scrutiny of the British press. The Canadian media made much of the attention the popular couple would garner from the famously obnoxious British papers, but, apart from a brief uproar over Diana Carney’s dislike of tea bags, this has not come to pass. An innocuous occurrence, or another instance of magic invoked through a darkened soul? Who am I to say?

As long as Warlock Underlord Carney continues to use his powers for good, there is really no harm in his being a warlock. Is he evil or chaotic in alignment? I don’t really know what that means, but I don’t think so. His terse and dynamic public statements sure are missed here though. Our new Governor seems content to do what most bankers do best: his job, discreetly. And I actually prefer it that way after Poloz issued a weird statement thanking Canadians for taking on crippling amounts of debt during the recession. I don’t blame him though–the shoes of a warlock are hard to fill.