Tuesday, April 2, 2013

The Slippery Slope of Language Intolerance

Back in 1977 when the PQ first introduced Bill 101, the justification by René Lévesque and company was that without enshrined French language rights, the French fact in North America, was destined to disappear, the loquiturs assimilated in a sea of English.

But unlike the hard-line wing of the party led by the author's bill, Camille Laurin, Levesque was troubled and somewhat embarrassed by the need for a such a restrictive law and battled royally to tone its more radical elements before ultimately acquiescing to the majority in his government who saw the law as not only necessary for the preservation of French, but as fair payback to the English who had in their eyes exploited and dominated the French majority for centuries.

Many clauses that were included in the original Bill 101 were so clearly unconstitutional that even a collegiate freshman would conclude that they were included purely for political reasons, since there was no question of those clauses surviving a constitutional challenge.

Bill 101: "French is the language of the legislation and of the justice system in Quebec"
Nothing but nothing demonstrates the bad faith of the drafter of Bill 101 than Article 7 of Chapter III, which completely contravenes the BNA Act, the founding document that created Canada and which represents the highest law of the land, which incidentally, to this day, defines the limits of federal and provincial jurisdiction.
It couldn't be simpler, Article 133 of the BNA act says;
133. Either the English or the French Language may be used by any Person in the Debates of the Houses of the Parliament of Canada and of the Houses of the Legislature of Quebec; and both those Languages shall be used in the respective Records and Journals of those Houses; and either of those Languages may be used by any Person or in any Pleading or Process in or issuing from any Court of Canada established under this Act, and in or from all or any of the Courts of Quebec.
The only reasonable conclusion to draw is that Dr. Laurin included these clauses knowing full well they'd be overturned in the Supreme Court, thus creating a 'humiliating setback' for French language rights, resulting in a heightened linguistic tension, a cynical attempt to stir up emotions of betrayal and persecution in Quebec through shameful deception and manipulation.

Today language militants still whine that their sacrosanct law has been unfairly sliced and diced by the Supremos, an attempt in their eyes, to limit Quebec's right to determine its own linguistic policy.

But for most Quebecers, Bill 101 was never about punishing Anglos, rather a reasonable effort to advance and protect the French language and culture.
Let us remember that in accepting Bill 101, the francophone majority willingly embraced restrictions on their own community in regards to sending their children to English schools.

And so we should understand that like Certs breath mint, Bill 101 is really two laws in one, a law to protect French and a law to punish the English.
Some see it as one, some see it as the other and some see it as both.

The effect of the Bill 101 is also a question of perspective, hardline separatists seeing the 35 year old law as ineffective, middle of the road francophones seeing it as effective and necessary while most anglos see the law as devastatingly punitive and coercive.

All this has been debated since the inception of the law and opinions abound in both the French and English press as well as the blogosphere.
There's not much I can add to bring much perspective to the debate, smarter and more erudite writers have covered the territory ad nauseum, but I would like to tackle an aspect that remains largely unexplored, that is the cumulative psychological effect that Bill 101 has had on the mainstream francophone opinion, vis-a-vis linguistic relations in Quebec.

Let us put aside for the moment the positions of French hardliners or Anglos and consider the Francophone majority, those who never saw Bill 101 as a weapon, but rather a cure.
The attitudinal shift of this group towards language intolerance over the 35 years reign of Bill 101 is nothing less than remarkable.
I think that if Rene Levesque were alive today, he'd be stunned and humiliated at witch hunt being waged against Anglos and the deliberate marginalization and exclusion of English in Quebec.
But this shift in attitude was inevitable, Bill 101 set in motion by accident or design, an inexorable shift towards linguistic intolerance.

I am reminded of the famous Stanford Prison Experiment back in 1971 wherein Philip Zimbard ran social experiment which laid bare the perils of allowing one group of seemingly well-adjusted citizens to hold dominion over another.
Simply explained, the experiment explored the;
 "...psychological effects of becoming a prisoner or prison guard."
 "The participants adapted to their roles well beyond Zimbardo's expectations, as the guards enforced authoritarian measures and ultimately subjected some of the prisoners to psychological torture." 
The experiment even affected Zimbardo himself, who, in his role as the superintendent, permitted the abuse to continue. Two of the prisoners quit the experiment early and the entire experiment was abruptly stopped after only six days.
Bill 101 cast ordinary francophone Quebecers as the prison guards and Anglos as prisoners and painful as it is to say, we are seeing abusive and racist attitudes creeping into the mainstream society, all courtesy Bill 101, Quebec's very own real-life Stanford experiment.

How far have attitudes changed?
In a recent article in the decidedly middle-of-the-road La Presse, an article discussing the 'painful' preponderance of English store names, the author Louise Leduc, wrote this;
"Important to note: In Carrefour Laval, if a quarter of the stores have English names , the others don't exactly reinforce the French face of Quebec (Browns, Reitmans, Terra Nostra, Zaxe, Clarks, Briks, Rudsak, Aveda, La Senza, Michael Kors, etc.)."
(" Fait à noter, au Carrefour Laval, si le quart des magasins a un nom anglais, les autres ne renforcent pas nécessairement le visage français du Québec (Browns, Reitmans, Terra Nostra, Zaxe, Clarks, Briks, Rudsak, Aveda, La Senza, Michael Kors, etc.)." Link{fr}
 I don't think I've ever seen such a patently racist thing written in La Presse, yet it passed without a whimper of protest.
To those of you who are apt to defend the above words as something quite innocent, well all I can say is that you are part of the problem.

The author intimates that proper names that are not French, somehow disturb societal karma. Stores named after their Jewish founders (Browns, Reitmans, Michael Kors) or stores named after their English founders (Clarks, Briks,(sic) Birks) or even made up names that have no linguistic definition, are all unacceptable in post Bill 101 Quebec.

I don't know how the author can defend her characterization of Jewish or English family names as unhelpful without sounding racist. Clearly she is telling us Quebec would be better off without them, otherwise why bring them up?
I'm sure Madame Leduc will be furious at my characterization of her and therein lies the problem. To her, complaining about proper names not being French enough is not a sign of intolerance.

How about another mainstream commentator loosing this observation on television;



Have people lost their marbles?.......Yup, there it is, the Stanford Experiment in all its splendor. 

I bet Mr. Pelletier does not even realize how low he has sunk.
Perhaps he would also like impose a $4,000 fine on any person who publicly says "God Bless You" after a sneeze, $2,000 for speaking English and $2,000 for violating the secular nature of Quebec society.

Are these examples an aberration and a misrepresentation of what is going on in mainstream Quebec?
I don't think so, that is why we see stories of extreme language intolerance more and more often.

One of our valued contributors, R.S. put together this recap of language intolerance, ordinary Quebecers acting out their rage;
"Here is a round-up of just some of the recent events concerning franco-Quebecers who don’t want to hear any English in their lives, ever. Believe it or not, there are actually people in Quebec who still don’t understand that English is a right, not a privilege.

Let’s see… well, for starters, there’s always this famous example that went viral around the world:
Angry Quebecer goes CRAZY over Asian people speaking English in public in Montreal
Then, there are always these people, whose jobs supposedly involved serving the public:Metro workers allegedly refuse to help English-speaking customer

Then, there was also this public transportation employee who put up a French-only sign in a majority-anglo neighbourhood, implying that he wouldn’t serve customers if they are English-speakers:
Sign in ticket booth 'insulting,' metro user says

And then, there’s this intolerant woman in a hospital:
Criminal Charges Justified After Man's Allergen Thrown In His Face


And then, there there’s this paramedic who was willing to put a little girl’s life in danger in order to argue about his political opinions:
Quebec paramedic argues about language

And then, there was also this woman who was actually physically assaulted for having dared to speak English in public in Quebec:
Woman Assaulted by STM worker
And then, there’s this nutbar, of course, who I don’t believe is a unique case in Quebec:Quebec language debate in the metro

And then, there are these people who don’t want to have a good coach for the Habs if he speaks English only:
Protest Against Habs Anglo Coach

And then there are these people who are against an immigrant depanneur owner who was tricked by a radio station, illegally recorded and broadcast:
Language protest in Montreal's Verdun district"
I've been watching the Bill 14 committee hearings, which is in the process of listening to the opinion of ordinary citizens as well as lobby groups, school commission, unions and even public servants over proposed amendments.
It's a bit sad, the level of disdain among those francophone groups which choose to appear  to fulminate and rage at the English 'enemy.'
There's but one tiresome and pernicious refrain....
"Crack down on the Anglos!"
"More enforcement!"
"More rules and restrictions!"
"Punish all who refuse to knuckle under and steamroll minority rights!"

I defy anyone to tell me that this characterization is not true.

We have come to expect certain behavior from Franco-supremacists like Mario Beaulieu and company, but make no mistake, linguistic intolerance has crept into mainstream society courtesy Bill 101.
Allow for official state-sanctioned discrimination on any level and the unintended consequence is that over time, we get what we have today, a society that breathes nastiness, xenophobia and intolerance.

Bill 101 has sent us down a slippery slope of language intolerance.

Bill 14, the current draft law being debated as a language upgrade, is the logical extension of the "Bill 101 Experiment," it is a law not meant to protect French, it is a law meant to codify the dominance of one societal group over another.

It is a story as old as organized society and as author George Orwell described in his allegorical masterpiece, Animal Farm;

The essence of Bill 101;
“All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others.”

...and this, the essence of Bill 14;
“Four legs good, two legs bad.”   

I don't know if Bill 101 saved French in Quebec, but I do know that it has made Quebec a nastier and more intolerant society and it's more than a little sad to see what the province has become.

222 comments:

  1. I think there are a couple of things which upset me about this Bill 101 and Bill 14 (amendment) that doesn't seem to get mentioned enough.
    If the intent of Bill 101 and Bill 14 is to give Francophones predominance of Anglophones or Allophones, then it must be killed as no one is above the other. The Quebec Gov't will argue that it isn't Francophones against Anglophones, it's actually French against English, which in essence is the same thing but using language to make the difference (simply because language isn't protected under the constitution and cannot be used as a means of discrimination according to the Supreme Court)

    Once someone is willing to finally recognize this fact, that by giving one language (in order words, one group of people, a predominance over another, we are in essence removing the "All are equal" from our constitution.

    The original intent of Bill 101 (which is what the world accepts or believes is the intent), is that it wants to protect the rights of French speaking people to enable them to live, work and receive services in their language (which is acceptable to everyone) and not to block anyone else from receiving the same thing they are requesting for themselves. Thereby making everyone equal.

    Too bad the lawyers and courts in our land can't see the difference and enact laws against what is happening to the English language and community in Quebec.

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    Replies
    1. MikeBChateauguay writes:

      "The original intent of Bill 101 (which is what the world accepts or believes is the intent), is that it wants to protect the rights of French speaking people to enable them to live, work and receive services in their language (which is acceptable to everyone)..."

      Uh, not to me.

      If a francophone wants to "live" in French, great. No argument there.

      If a francophone wants to "work" in French, great. That's his right. But that right should NOT extend to that francophone demanding that a businessman must hire him if the businessman requires a worker to communicate (including internal memos) and interact with customers or the boss in another language (usually going to be English). Tough luck. You don't want to work under that job description, go find another job.

      If a francophone wants to "receive services" in French, great. No argument there...provided those are services offered by either the federal or provincial government. It should NOT extend to services in the private sector where businesses must be free to interact in whatever language they so choose to use. And if a francophone doesn't feel he is getting the proper service he feels he deserves (ie, service in French) then he can bloody well take his consumer dollar to someone who WILL give him the service he feels he deserves. That's the marketplace. And tough shit if you don't like it.

      Delete
    2. I wish I could have your faith in the marketplace Tony. Truth is, when I don't like something with the marketplace, I vote for someone who will change the market through legislation, and I'm not ashamed of it.

      Delete
    3. FROM ED
      Mike B is right when he says "The original intent of Bill 101 (which is what the world accepts or believes is the intent), is that it wants to protect the rights of French speaking people to enable them to live, work and receive services in their language (which is acceptable to everyone) and not to block anyone else from receiving the same thing they are requesting for themselves. Thereby making everyone equal.
      What he says is true. If you listen to mention of our situation in the ROC or the U.S. is exactly what they think. They don't see our situation as bad because they never get the whole story. They give it a TSK TSK and move on. I'm sure Harper knows better but acts as though everything's just fine. "When are those annoying Quebecers going to solve their petty problem?" Ed

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    4. Yannick:

      "I wish I could have your faith in the marketplace Tony. Truth is, when I don't like something with the marketplace, I vote for someone who will change the market through legislation, and I'm not ashamed of it."

      Then you very well may miss a better way to preserve and promote the French language (assuming that is a goal of yours).

      Using the marketplace is incredibly more efficient AND effective than by government decree. This is especially true in the area of language.

      Indeed, legislation gives the false impression to the people that enacting laws can actually preserve and promote a language when what it really does is make the people passive in this area. It tells them: there is nothing that YOU have to do, as individuals, to preserve and promote the French language; all will be done for you just by passing a law.

      So instead of being an active participant in the marketplace and withholding one's consumer dollar because, say, an English storeowner in a French neighbourhood refuses to put up a French sign, the consumer thinks that a law requiring French on signs will do the trick. But all this does is coerce a businessman to do something he othewise wouldn't do and makes the francophone consumer lazy and passive as regards helping the French language.

      That's why Bill 101 is, truly, a great danger to French.

      Delete
    5. The Quebec Liberal Party are in no way ever going to help the Anglophone community. I am a member of that party and have been trying to convince influential members to “tone down the language restrictions” for years and I am constantly, albeit politely, given a brush off. Let’s face it, the QLP is the mother of the PQ, and when it comes to English the QLP &PQ want to keep the francophone proletariat and unilingual as possible because it suits their purpose – power and money.

      Look at Quebec over the past 50 years. Duplesis and the francophone portion of the Catholic Church (le grand noirceur), Lesage-Johnson- Bourassa- Levesque (the so called Revolution Tranquille). Let’s face it, all that happened was the Bishops and anglo industrialists were replaced by politicians and their minions, such as the infamous Quebec Union leaders. In my opinion, much of Quebec’s Francophone population are still living in a version of Le Grand Noirceur. The new francophone economic elites; the politicians, Media: Peladeau’s, Entertainment: Laliberte’s, Angelil’s, Cloutier’s, etc..., all have a pretty sweet deal. Hell they’ve cornered their respective markets. Especially the French language entertainment industry, most Francophones don’t even know they are watching cheap rip-off’s of American television shows.

      Conclusion: Keep the Francophone proletariat unilingual then you can more easily control the message. It’s all about power and money

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    6. "Using the marketplace is incredibly more efficient AND effective than by government decree."

      Following your advices, if I don't like Bombardier's attitude
      regarding french in the work place, you know what, I will just buy
      my private jets elsewhere. They will know that I am not a happy
      customer...

      Delete
    7. FROM ED
      "Keep the Francophone proletariat unilingual then you can more easily control the message. It’s all about power and money"
      That would be fine except that they want the English nonilingual. Ed

      Delete
    8. if levesque was concerned about bill 101, he could have stopped it. it's time to end this myth that he had doubts about it and its impact

      Delete
    9. Irwin thanks for going to the commission and giving the speech.

      It makes a difference!

      Delete
    10. MarcManCan:

      Excellent post. I wish this forum had a "like" button so that I could "like" it.

      Irwin Rapoport:

      It is great that you have posted on this forum. I do hope that you will bring your knowledge and insights onto this forum on a regular basis!

      Delete
  2. FROM ED
    EDITOR,
    I know I sound like a broken record but we need to hope that DR.Couillard and the Liberal Party can change the picture for English in Quebec. The past has proved that demonstrations, emails, pleas etc., accomplish nothing. Howard Galganov was a great man, he put his heart and soul into the cause and fought pretty much alone. The English press convinced us that things were not so bad and he lost any followers he had. I see the same thing happening here on the blog that nobody wants to take action. "Let's just talk about it."
    I suspect Dr. Couillard is on his own and I'm sure he knows it.. He knows the English are behind him but he also knows it's not enough. Yes, polls show that the Libs are ahead but he needs more.
    Anglos are demanding that he lay out his plans for the future. If he does, it's over. We'll have four more years of PQ. He needs to get the French federalists onside. I have been asking for months that some of the posters here write letters to the French press. Unfortunately, I don't do well in written French. But while they are willing to show their competence here on an English blog they won't post same where it might do some good.
    We have no choice but to wait and see What Couillard can achieve but for Heavens sake, the odd letter to him might give him some support. Think about it . I will try to find the best email address. Try to be patient until he has what we need. Ed

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    Replies
    1. Dr. Couillard is as bad as the PQ.

      And if he is not, Ed, then let him come out and say he is for the total and complete repeal of Bill 101.

      If he can't do that, he is as racist as all the rest of them.

      Delete
    2. FROM ED
      Tony, you're starting to sound like a troll . I know you don't believe the things you say when you're being contrary. I have enough to post about without arguing with you about something so far out that only a troll would have said it . Don't try to bait me, I won't waste my time . As an author you should know better Ed

      Delete
    3. Ed:

      I'll continue to be contrary to you if and when I feel it necessary to do so.

      Delete
    4. Whoa, Tony and Ed! Ease up. I realize Bill 101 in some capacity won't go away. I'd accept a return to Bill 22 at this point where other languages were tolerated, but for the sake of advancement of society, improve the teaching of English in French schools so as not to captivate people beyond those who don't bother to learn English. Those who are motivated to have their kids learn English and older students who are so motivated should not be denied.

      I've come around to understand there is a legitimate complaint about immigrants favouring English schooling over French, and the lack of integration, but I think anyone coming from English speaking nations beyond what the "Canada clause" allows (other provinces) should be extended to all Commonwealth nations and the U.S., unless prior to immigration, children were not being educated in English. Just because I understand it doesn't mean I like it. I'm not interested in language testing again after what happened in the mid-1970s because NOBODY would go to English school!

      Kids schooled in English these days are usually bilingual because of stronger French programs, French immersion and the emphasis of learning to speak more proficient French. It's the rest of us over age 50 who are displaced...some of us bitterly so!

      I usually watch Barry Wilson's commentaries from CTV News in Montreal, and like he said a couple of weeks ago, Bill 101 worked and all this extra b.s. is beyond the ridiculous. It's hatred in my opinion.

      Delete
    5. Mr. Sauga writes:

      "I've come around to understand there is a legitimate complaint about immigrants favouring English schooling over French, and the lack of integration..."

      Respectuflly, Mr. Sauga, it is not up to you, the PQ, the Liberals, or anyone else to decide for immigrants with which language group they decide to integrate into. They must be free to choose that themselves.

      If Quebec feels that this is a threat to the French language I respectfully suggest they vote "yes" in the majority in the next election and get their own country. The boundaries of an independent nation will most certainly give them the protection and insulation from the evil, integrating influence of the English language.

      However, others, such as myself, feel that it is the lack of the knowledge of English that is the greatest threat to the French language. And I include immigrants in that as well as native-born francophones-de-souche. What will preserve French best in this globalized world is affluence of the individual...and that can be be achieved when individuals in Quebec has a working knowledge of the universal language of commerce, the internet, and globalization: English.

      You hobble francophones and immigrants by denying them the right to speak the language of their choice and the language of education of their choice.

      Delete
    6. Tony: You missed an important line in what I wrote: I said I didn't like it!

      Maybe I'm starting to mellow with age. Naaaaaaaaaahhhh...

      Delete
  3. FROM ED
    Cutie, where did you pick up the bit about Couillard being a Fed plant? I frankly doubt it. Ed

    ReplyDelete
  4. ED:
    You sound like your are a prisonner living in a prison?
    Have they locked access to the 401?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ed actually sounds like he is suffering from Stockholm Syndrome.

      Delete
    2. @student

      mate i have been posting under this nickname for a few months now. would you mind picking another one? thanks.

      Delete
    3. Karma couldn't be so cruel as to permit another jerk! Must be a big joke. Resident?

      Delete
    4. @cutie003

      i agree with your association cutie003. i too tend to think your pal resident evil is a big joke.

      Delete
    5. No Cutie, wasn't me - you know who the alter ego is when I feel like busting the little one's chops. BTW, have you noticed how the child is getting quite pissy tonight? Guess the glory hole was empty today.

      Delete
    6. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    7. student, what stops you from moving to Rimouski where you can live in a unilingual paradise?

      Delete
    8. Not only Rimouski but Matane, Sept-Îles, Chibougamau, Jonquière, La Tuque, Montmagny, Val d’Or and countless other places… It makes no sense that people who don’t want to be affronted by hearing any English in their daily lives choose to live anywhere in or near Montreal. (I actually have a cousin who did move to Rimouski.)

      Just as Quebec is distinct from Canada, Montreal is distinct from Quebec.

      Delete
    9. I think Real Student and Joseph are right - Dudent would be much happier living away from the rest of us so just pack up and be on your way little one. A great life awaits you away from we devil anglophones - have fun in your new fantasy world with free tuition, free room and board and pot smoking every night, if you wish.

      Delete
    10. @josephe real student cutie003

      you have no idea where i live. so cut the bs.

      i think anglos are important to quebec's cultural balance. i don't think anglos are the "devil" and i don't dream of a "unilingual paradise". so cut the bs on that front too.

      @cutie003

      do you seriously think low tuition and pot smoking are not universal priorities? why do you try to badge them french?!?

      Delete
    11. Time and again Student, you put your foot in your mouth.

      First, you're another in a long line of sepatrolls who really believe that a separate Quebec would subsidize all education. Well please McFly, can you tell us where that money would come from, especially with the vastly reduced financial reserves?

      Do you believe in cold fusion Student? Hmmm?

      Is that where your belief that money can materialize from nowhere comes from?

      _____________

      i think anglos are important to quebec's cultural balance. i don't think anglos are the "devil" and i don't dream of a "unilingual paradise". so cut the bs on that front too.

      If that is so, then you wouldn't feel a need to segregate "your people" from another. It really doesn't get any simpler than that. It's like the hip-hop song says "Don't start no shit and there won't be no shit!"

      Simple as that.

      ________________________

      do you seriously think low tuition and pot smoking are not universal priorities? why do you try to badge them french?!?

      No, they're not universal priorities.

      Life lesson: We need tiered costs for universities.

      Simply because someone who wants "It" bad enough will find a way to put him/herself through an ivy league education and transcend the class they were born in.

      You wouldn't understand this because your parents indoctrinated you to be a victim.

      That's why as a victim you believe a government needs to take care of you and provide you with the ideal society.

      Winners, doers...they laugh at governments.

      They make their own lives, they make their own rules.

      So with all that being said, doesn't being a real man sound a whole lot better than the "reality" you're presently living in?

      Delete
    12. @resident evil

      "who really believe that a separate Quebec would subsidize all education. Well please McFly, can you tell us where that money would come from...?"

      of course. it would come from the 40 or so billions that quebec residents send to ottawa as taxes every year.

      but i'm not sure all education would be subsidized in an independant quebec. i would be tempted to support this idea, but the population is divided on it. so it's not a given.

      "then you wouldn't feel a need to segregate "your people" from another."

      what do you mean? how do you know how i feel about segregation? i don't recall sharing this feeling with you, mate.

      "No, they're not universal priorities."

      of course they are. anglos and francos smoke pot and the whole spectrum of ideas about tuition costs find takers in both anglo and franco communities throughout the world. that's what i mean by universal.

      anglos sided with the liberals in last spring's conflict because they just couldn't support the pq that sided with the students. it tells very little on their true beliefs about how to share education costs between the taxpayers and the students. most anglos probably didn't even bother to really think about it. that's why it seems like an anglo versus franco thing but it's not. it's about education. and of course education is a universal theme.

      "doesn't being a real man sound a whole lot better than the "reality" you're presently living in?"

      both sound similar to me, mate.

      Delete
    13. The 40 billions who get sent to Ottawa and get sent back with interest as subsidies, equalization payments, federal jobs for francophones in Gatineau, naval contracts in Quebec shipyards, guaranteed agricultural markets and unemployment insurance?

      Anywho, Resident Evil, you make it sound like students should shoulder the cost of their education. Since university budgets run at around 25 000$ a year per student, there is no one in this world who can afford to pay for their own education up front. They can go in debt, they can get daddy to pay, or they can work 10 years earning it, but no one can afford 100 000$+ at 18 years without an education.

      To not help students with the cost of education is to accept a plutocratic society where the wealthy monopolize all the good jobs, with dire consequences for social mobility. Look at the US for instance.

      The issue is not whether or not students should pay for their own education but how much of it should they pay. Too little and they don't value it and they waste the taxpayer's money, too much and they don't get educated and we all lose.

      Delete
    14. @yannick

      yes that very forty billions. spot on, mate. i believe quebec is better apt at investing it according to its needs and ambitions than a parliament dominated by western canada mp's.

      Delete
    15. Those 40 billions will be sorely needed to help all the people out of jobs because they're no longer getting EI or being employed in cushy federal jobs, you'll have less than you have now for education.

      Delete
    16. I think your efforts are lost on him Yannick. He just regurgitated the oldest bit of seppie rhetoric when he said "a parliament dominated by western canada mp's"

      Think how many separatists you've encountered with the same hard-on for getting their hate-on for Albertans and other "Canadian Cowboys?"

      Same old argument that Quebec has some sort of more "advanced and enlightened" point of view on fiscal management.

      Quebec does not need to be sovereign for us to see that we have a deep-seeded culture of mismanagement and misappropriation of public funds.

      The trouble with all separatists who cling to the financial argument is that they only see the side they choose to see.

      They refuse to see what A) the initial investment those funds sent to Ottawa bring back... and B) what portion of Quebec's infrastructure these funds go towards managing.

      No wonder Ottawa is shutting off the EI valve.

      Delete
    17. @yannick

      "...you'll have less than you have now for education."

      really? how can you come up with such a definite position on this? of course the forty billions will be spent in no time, but what if quebec decides to buy less war planes? maybe it would free up dough for more phd's? of course it's a simplistic example, but it's enough to counter the simplistic federalist propaganda you just served me.

      independant quebec would have roughly 100 billions revenue, right? 70 billions minus equalization plus 40 billions federal taxes. for 8 million people. well that's a much better situation than present canada that raises 220 billions for 35 million people.

      so will free quebec have money for this or that? well it's just a matter of what quebeckers choose to buy, really.

      Delete
  5. Ed: It was one of the comments from a reader of the Gazette in one of the Editorials. I can find it for you if you like but it was the guy's opinion of what has happened with Dr. Couillard becoming leader of the Quebec Liberals.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. FROM ED
      Never mind Cutie, I kinda though it was somebody's guesswork. Harper is trying his damdest to not get involved and I believe he Couillard the way he ignored the letters that you and I sent his office. He's made his message pretty clear. The way I read his message is;- " Don't get me involved. I am a coward and if you get me involved people will find out that I am a coward."
      We are like the passengers on The Titanic who could see the SS California nearby and expected it would come to their aid.. Harper is a student of SS Californian's Captain James Lord who ignored the danger to protect his own. Ed

      Delete
    2. Well frankly Ed, I would like to believe that the guy is onto something. He is a separatist so if that's what they think, great!

      Delete
  6. Great post.

    I said it many times: the big problem with 101 today is not so much a specific provision here or there, but the effect that the law has on culture in this province. 101 is living a life of its own, a life way beyond the legal frame where things got pushed to the limit more or less and nowadays what's left is running into the realm of ridiculous while chasing after pasta. Now, 101 exists very much inside the cultural frame where it works hard to foster supremacist beliefs and attitudes in the population of this province. This is why apologists of 101 often ask point blank: name one provision that affects you. They know well that it might be harder to articulate specifics than it was for people leaving the province in the 1970s. Now, one has to point instead to certain behaviors of people which stem form 101's cultural influence, rather than pointing to specific provisions.

    The bill might have been designed to boost confidence in the local population, but it definitely went way above that. By going beyond, it ended up leaving behind a lack of social cohesion, little mutual respect, and rather loose ethical standards. Levesque would probably not be happy today. I agree with Editor on this.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are absolutely right adski - it has had more than a terrible affect on the population as a whole. Divisiveness and hatred for anyone besides the "superior" francophone pur laines have resulted in a more than unhappy provincial culture and have taken all outsiders along with it. The whole movement has been high jacked by the militants and they are happy to keep up their good work as evidenced by the IF and the SJBS movements, which are very strongly supported activists.

      Delete
  7. Relying on ANY provincial party to change the law in favour of ANGLOPHONES is absolutely stupid. Even if they DO make the change, any new Gov't could immediately reverse it back. We need FEDERAL intervention so that the change is not only made but impossible to change with any change in provincial Gov't.
    Although Federal intervention may be seen as encroaching on provincial jurisdiction, it HAS to be done as the provincial Gov'ts of Québec have proven that they cannot protect the interests of its minorities as they are too one sided in making and keeping Québec a unilingual French society. (Something someone else tried to do but also failed eventually)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. FROM ED
      Mike B. I think expecting any support from the Federal government for Anglos is not going to happen. Harper probably feels that any interest he shows in the Quebec minority could cause Franco minorities in other provinces to demand the same. Once a government proves itself with good economy and fair government, taking down the laws would be easy. Once it's done people ghet used to it and nobody wants them back. Ed

      Delete
    2. In 2 previous elections, Harper tried to appease the Quebec population and was basically shunned both times. Last election the conservatives won without the need for Quebec. So in all retrospect, the Federal Conservatives have nothing to lose in pissing off the Quebec majority. Harper can easily win 4 to 10 seats by simply stating that Montreal should be a bilingual City. Will this cause controversy, of course it will however it will probably win him the election. Most Anglos and Allophones are simply looking for equal rights so any party who truly attempts to challenge the unconstitutional laws has my vote. It’s really a win win for Harper. Stir the NDP, BQ and Liberals home turf and watch from the side lines. Who cares if he angers the Federalist Nationalist of Quebec, they won’t vote for him anyways. As for the separatist Trudeau , he would have his back to wall as he will have no choice but to defend French interests which would pin him against the ROC. The only problem with this is that it takes someone with big b***s to stir the pot in such fashion because once the elephant in the room is unleashed, there is no turning back.

      Delete
    3. @el_pcq

      "As for the separatist Trudeau , he would have his back to wall as he will have no choice but to defend French interests which would pin him against the ROC."

      you seem to agree that french canadians and the roc have diverging interests. it follows that quebec's independance is a valid solution to envisage, doesn't it?

      Delete
    4. @student

      "you seem to agree that french canadians and the roc have diverging interests."

      My apologies, I should have used "Quebecois interests" instead of "French interests" in my earlier comments. They are 2 distinctively different characters. To answer your question in a politically correct manner, no the ROC and Quebec do not have diverging interests. The only real difference between the 2 is primary language spoken by the majority, the rest is simply an artificial barrier caused by fear and ignorance. I've lived in all parts of the country and there are more similarities between Quebecois and the ROC than you can imagine.

      Delete
    5. @el_pcq

      "My apologies, I should have used "Quebecois interests" instead of "French interests" in my earlier comments."

      replacing french by quebecois doesn't change anything in your previous comment. you still acknowledge that quebec and roc have different, if not opposed interests. so much that a politician can't defend both populations, according to your analysis.

      trying to make this thing work, if one is to share your view, seems absurd.

      "I've lived in all parts of the country and there are more similarities between Quebecois and the ROC than you can imagine."

      really? well from what i see the cultural differences between quebecois and roc are numerous and big. canada is like if france and the uk was a single country. they both function better as independant states i'm sure.

      Delete
  8. Bill 101 has now become the sacred cow of all French Québecers and any provincial gov't seeking to change it and make English freer will be doing so at their immediate detriment and NO Gov't will take that gamble to appeaze a minority.

    ReplyDelete
  9. It's starting to bear a resemblance to the Salem Witch Trials. I remember the Zimbardo experiment from Social Psychology courses in university. It was fascinating, but at the same time horrifying to see what otherwise good people were capable of given the right (or perhaps wrong) circumstances. My faith in human nature took a hit from which it has never recovered.

    ReplyDelete
  10. @ Editor “the deliberate marginalization and exclusion of English in Quebec” you should mention the exclusion of the non elitist White French Canadian Roman Catholic(common folk) to NORTH AMERICA and maybe the WORLD.

    You have noticed the command of the English language of these highly intelligent & I bet highly paid trolls(pseudo elitist). Remember what that guy on the cross said “father forgive them for they know not what they do”.

    “The wave” (similar to Stanford prison experiment but happened in a high school) based on the real experience of a high school class in Palo Alto, CA in April 1967, whose teacher wanted to explain the rise of the Nazi party to his students. Please no reference to Godwin's law.
    This will give you the gist of the experiment.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wave_(novel)
    The movie parts 1&2 on youtube
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BVRXXbU-z7U
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?NR=1&v=GXi71XBdh1o&feature=endscreen

    From my favourite beetle “John Lennon“ "Our society is run by insane people for insane objectives. I think we're being run by maniacs for maniacal ends and I think I'm liable to be put away as insane for expressing that. That's what's insane about it."

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. FROM ED
      Mike B. says, "Relying on ANY provincial party to change the law in favour of ANGLOPHONES is absolutely stupid. Even if they DO make the change, any new Gov't could immediately reverse it back." Not necessarily so Mike. the only party that would want it back will be completely decimated if the Liberals have the win that polls are predicting. There is no one that can win it back.
      One big problem is that Couillard and the Libs need to get elected and they can't do it on a promise to eradicate the language law. They must do it on the basis of economy and good government. When they have a majority they can fight for Anglos. Step by step they can eliminate laws starting with the most unfair ones until the rights Dr. Couillard promised are completely fulfilled. Unfortunately Anglos are naturally impatient and distrusting , they are asking for that promise now before the election. If they get it they might lose the election. Such a radical change smacked in ones face is enough to send Franco Feds running to the PQ. The one displaces the other. Ed

      Delete
    2. Ed, what will you conclude if it turns out that you are wrong?

      Delete
  11. Editor,

    It did not take much time for Bill 101 to have an effect on the francophone majority. From the start, "Anglo Go Home" graffities were seen everywhere and this message was repeated over and over again. Perhaps I'm giving the man too much credit, but I have a feeling that Camille Laurin knew this would eventually happen and was perhaps a majort purpose of Bill 101. After all, he was a psychiatrist. I believe that if Bill 101 were to be repealed, there would be massive protests on the streets, but eventually people will adopt to the new reality as there would be a new prison guard with new rules. The Zimbardo experiment can go both ways.

    However, my only problem is that by claiming that "mainstream" francophone society is becoming intolerrant, the Editor is in fact claiming that the average francophone is a racist anglophobe. Most anglos, including myself, spend much time with our francophone counterparts and many anglos are finding francophone soul mates at an increasing rate. How do you explain this, Editor?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're absolutely correct Steven - I have numerous francophone friends who are not this way at all and only one is a separatist (or if any of the others are, they have not told me). I find though, that they are indifferent to Bill 101 and really see no reason why we bother to fight against it. In other words, it's just part of quebec and is accepted without question. That is the sad part - they want to be Canadian but don't understand that the bill removes rights and freedoms from the Canadian Constitution and should not be allowed. The separatist brainwashing has worked remarkedly well. They can pat themselves on the back for that.

      Delete
    2. Do you have any statistic? I don't really think most french are open to english in the province. Even one could say they are more hostile towards english especially with Walmart suing OLF in courts, media attacks on OLF, etc. Many feel threatened. I still think the only way to resolving this issue is Partition.

      Delete
    3. I don't know about that Liam - In our area, outside of the stupid IF bunch, I find the attitude of some of the francophones has changed since the election but most are still OK. I do notice that some of the clerks in the stores, especially those that have immigrated from places like Haiti, don't speak to me = they just run the tab on the groceries and never speak even when I say hi and thank you. I want to scream sometimes because I find this so annoying given the fact that they were never personally involved in any of the events that led to where we are today but have automatically picked sides in the debate. Another reason why I do my shopping in Ottawa as much as possible. Pisses me off no end. The seppies must be very proud of themselves for accomplishing this little feat also and ensuring that the immigrants follow right along with the masses. Probably one of the questions on the quebec immigration form "Will you vote Yes in any upcoming referendums to break up Canada"? (An extra 50 points if answered with a "Yes") My francophone friends do not find that Bill 101 is unfair though because they just don't give it a second thought. Most are federalists, probably because of where we live, but I do have one separatist friend. If any of the rest are, they haven't disclosed it to me.

      Delete
    4. @cutie003

      "...and never speak even when I say hi and thank you. I want to scream sometimes because I find this so annoying..."

      what would you like the clerk to tell you?!?

      i think even better than ontario you should move to the usa. you'd get plenty of fake sympathy over there.

      "Another reason why I do my shopping in Ottawa as much as possible. Pisses me off no end."

      i understood you don't move accross the river because of the difference in home value between gatineau and ottawa. but don't you think you'd be happier in a smaller house, with a smaller garden, in ottawa, than in a bigger house in quebec?!?

      "...but I do have one separatist friend. If any of the rest are, they haven't disclosed it to me."

      hum. i'd be surprised if you had any "undisclosed" friends cutie003.

      Delete
    5. What would happen if the clerk serving the public said "Hi"?

      Delete
    6. What I gather from all this Equanimity is that they are instructed to not respond to the English speaking customers unless THEY wish to but, even being immigrants to this country, they are made to feel superior to the English population already residing here. The whole thing is sick if you ask me. Even if they responded in French would be understandable but not to respond at all gives me a "shut out of my own neighbourhood" feeling that I find very unpleasant. Again, all this started with the introduction of Bill 14 and the election of the PQ government last time around. Before that, I never found myself feeling this way. The whole atmosphere in our area has been poisoned since last fall and things are changing rapidly and not favourably.

      Delete
    7. @cutie003

      "...but not to respond at all gives me a "shut out of my own neighbourhood" feeling that I find very unpleasant."

      in real life, are you less nasty, as nasty or more nasty then you are on paper?

      Delete
  12. A manifestation of this post-101 mindset can be seen following the Conservative motion that stated the “Québécois people are a nation”. Some separatists purposefully and persistently extrapolate this as saying that “Quebec is a nation”, which is not at all what the Conservative motion stated. Others have said “Great, that’s a good first step… now it’s time to follow up on this and take the next step” even though there is no next step. The motion is it and that’s all there is to it. The Québécois are a nation just like the hundreds of other nations that also make up Canada, including all of the First Nations.

    Bill 101 has also intentionally fostered this mistaken idea that French should be exactly identical to English in every single respect. This is simply not possible and it will never happen. It’s Camille Laurin’s fault for planting this idea in separatists’ heads, that French in British Columbia should be identical to English in Quebec (regardless of history and human settlement patterns) and anything less than this is another “humiliation” for these professional victims.

    Yet another manifestation of this mindset is when “student”, I believe it was, said that he dreamed of his own country “just like anglos have”, as if he didn’t already have one called Canada that already makes Quebecers among the freest people in the world.

    What was this dream comment supposed to mean exactly? That he dreams of making a country just for people like him? That by having a French-only country, they would finally be able eradicate English from its territory? That it would somehow finally eliminate the need to know English??? That it would change the fundamental fact of 7 million francophones in a sea of 350 million anglophones? That it would make it acceptable to trample over minority rights once they are free from the shackles of the Supreme Court???

    The current muted behaviour of the PQ minority government doesn’t augur well for what we could expect from this “dream country”. If none of the above are the case, then what would the difference from the status quo? If all minorities can dream for a country, why shouldn’t they all have countries? Let’s make hundreds of new countries then. Every nation can have one, why not!

    Separatists already know that they will never achieve overwhelming support for sovereignty, which is why they need to resort to tricks to eke out the mythical +1 vote. After that, they believe that sovereignty will be a done deal, forever and ever. Never mind that it’s hypocritical not to accept that the previous two referenda won by more than a +1 majority and therefore should have settled the question forever and ever. Instead, they prefer to create perpetual instability and keep damaging Quebec forever...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "Yet another manifestation of this mindset is when student, I believe it was, said that he dreamed of his own country "just like anglos have."

      dude never put words in people's keyboards. it's really bad ethics. if you are too lazy to look stuff up then don't bother using quotation marks. thanks.

      Delete
    2. Yes, well lots of people confuse nation and country.

      It would be simpler if they let the primarily english speaking region partition. Pontiac, Outaouais and Northern Quebec don't want to be apart of Quebec vision of the future. It will leave less bitterness in a whole generation of quebecker that will be bred of hatred towards the english-speaking quebeckers.

      Instead, most francophone are so deluded that they expect to drive off all english-speaking and bilingual quebecker away of the province, and get a majority of Yes votes.

      Delete
    3. FROM ED
      I live in a predominantly French neighbourhood I have a great rapport with them When I went around campaigning for the Liberals before the election they were not all PQ Most preferred the Libs, mainly because their man in Verdun, Henri Gautri has been a well loved representative for 28 years. Apart from the hard liners, francophones are not full of hatred. They have a human side like us. Ed

      Delete
    4. @liam

      "It would be simpler if they let the primarily english speaking region partition. Pontiac, Outaouais..."

      dude pontiac has a history of voting for bloc quebecois at roughly 30%. from this i estimate the percentage of separatists in your district to be around 40%, since many separatists vote for whatever else at the federal elections, as the house of commons is not where quebec's independance will originate from. i'd say another 30% is soft federalists but would respect a provincial yes majority vote.

      you won't partition much with the rest.

      do you have different numbers or estimations at hand?

      Delete
    5. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, April 3, 2013 at 6:25:00 AM EDT

      "They have a human side like us. Ed"

      What a low life, disgusting remark.
      EDITOR: This is the secong racist affirmation made by ED this week alone.
      He deplores the arrogance and the intolerance of Franco supremacists... only to to come out with this horrible and pityful comment.

      I didn't know this blog was for closet racists of all kinds.

      Delete
    6. @un gars bien sympathique de calgary

      i agree with you, mate. that was a shit comment by ed.

      the solution to his problems is inside of him. he can maybe draw hope from this.

      Delete
    7. FROM ED
      Incredible, Student and Une Gars are a perfect match. Not only using the same words but also the same total banality. Read the last two posts and get a good laugh. Thanks for the laugh garshit. Ed

      Delete
    8. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, April 3, 2013 at 4:39:00 PM EDT

      ED wrote above:
      "Thanks for the laugh garshit. Ed"

      garshit?

      How old are you ED 77 or 7?

      I hope that was a typo.

      Delete
    9. I think you have to be pretty vindictive to see negativity where someone is urging not to dehumanize opponents.

      Delete
    10. FROM ED
      No typo, just reminding everyone that you're full of shit. Ed

      Delete
  13. At least, Dumont told the guy his proposition was stupid. Good on him.

    ReplyDelete
  14. IMPORTANT REMINDER

    Please do not post under someone else's screen name, it isn't fair and it isn't nice.

    We value all opinions, pro, con, in between, but we do not value opinions or posts from those who by their actions try to confuse.

    To new 'student' please, please don't post under this screen name, I can't ask more politely..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Note to everyone, this rule applies to everyone except for me, because unlike the regular "student" I am no mere student...I AM SUPER STUDENT!!!

      Need proof - click on my profile picture, bish, it's all there.

      As your Super-Student, I just wanted to remind you all to keep calm...and carry on!

      Delete
  15. CLARIFICATION!!!

    I wish to correct what may be a mistaken conclusion drawn from this post, that is that most francophones are language racists.

    FAR FAR from it.
    It takes just a few radicals to taint public perception and an increase from 1% to 2% is a doubling nonetheless.

    We live in a media age, where every transgression, crime, insult, and opinion makes the news, colouring reality.

    I have decided to write a future post about the vast 'silent majority' of ALL Quebec citizens that are above this tiresome language debate.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Like the Germans in the 30s and 40s; they saw nutting, they heard nutting, they knew nutting. Blind, deaf and dumb. See no evil, hear no evil, parle no evil! Hmmmmm.....

      Interestingly, Editor, the one and only introductory psychology course I obligatorily took for my Commerce program used Philip G. Zimbardo's text of the day. That taxt had several research frontiers, one of them was the experiment you described above. It was in the section on conditioning. Other frontiers involving conditioning (the guts of the course I had to sleepwalk my way through) were a schoolteacher who one day told her grade 3 class that brown-eyed children were superior to blue-eyed children, and then the next day stated she made a mistake and it was the other way around. The brown-eyed children sure acted and felt superior (one of her brown-eyed students, criticized her up and down after she made a mistake in class stating "what do you expect, she's blue-eyed"). The next day, the blue-eyed children had a field day and the brown-eyed children paid for their obnoxious behaviour the prior day.

      The truth of the matter is, I figured all this out a few years before I took the course. I actually thought Quebec would arrive at its current point sooner than it did, but as you've stated before, editor, if a lie is told often enough unchallenged, it becomes fact, falsely or truthfully.

      I've stated it before and I'll state it again:

      People tend to see what they WANT to see; hear what they WANT to hear and believe what they WANT to believe.

      The English media was as hard on its own as the French media, a despicable and disgusting shock of a result. Galganov tried, Galganov left and like me, he doesn't give a rat's ass what happens to Quebec anymore. We both hope Quebec separates taking its debts, its something-for-nothing lazy-assed freeloaders and its racist values the hell out of Canada. What will Quebec do when it doesn't get free unearned equalization money to the tune of $10 billion and drown in its sixth highest per-capital debt in the world?

      The student protest of last year would be just the beginning of what an independent Quebec would become. Here in Ontario, I can live with the consequences - EASILY!

      Can you?

      Delete
    2. @sauga

      "Galganov tried, Galganov left and like me, he doesn't give a rat's ass what happens to Quebec anymore."

      how do you explain your daily visit to this blog, then?

      "What will Quebec do when it doesn't get free unearned equalization money to the tune of $10 billion..."

      if this ever happens it will mean quebec is a independant country. so it will do many quebec things, and not do many canadian things.

      "The student protest of last year would be just the beginning of what an independent Quebec would become."

      right on. in an indepeandant quebec tuition fees would be kept low and access to higher education high. what exactly is wrong with this sauga?

      Delete
    3. To be honest editor, most unilingual francophones I've met, separatist or not, have been somewhat racist or intolerant. There is a lot of intolerance on the anglo side too, but they generally tend to be more open minded.

      Of course, no real Québécois is going to openly admit their racism/intolerance. Ask them if they are racist, and they will claim to be the most open people in the world. Over the years, they have been taught that it's not racism or intolerance, it's just protecting their culture and language.

      Falardeau once claimed he wasn't racist. He then went on to say that he doesn't care if you're "white, black, brown, yellow, purple", as long as you're "with them". This is all perfectly normal for any separatist / language extremist.

      It's not really their fault, they don't know any better, and their leaders encourage this behaviour. When a drunken Parizeau got up on stage and blamed money and the "ethnic" vote, he was pretty much telling everyone that racism was acceptable in this province. No other North-American leader would ever even think of making a comment like that.

      I feel sorry for the immigrants & minorities who fall for the separatist/extremist propaganda. Sure, they want your vote, but if you look different, you'll end up as the first group thrown under the bus, even before the anglos.

      Delete
    4. General populations everywhere are under the influence of official "creeds". The mentality and culture are shaped by powers that be, comprehensively (from an early age in school), and ceaselessly (everyday through means of mass communication). The question on how complicit the general population is in anything unethical perpetrated by the powers is very hard to answer. On one hand, people are just people, easily manipulable, rather comfortable with what is thrown their way for their complicity, and also scared of a reaction against any sort of dissent on their part. On the other hand, they passively accept, trivialize, rationalize, and internalize things that have been normalized in their habitat through propaganda. So on one hand they face an uphill battle, on the other hand they can fight the battle if they really want it. The choice is hard, but the choice is theirs.


      Delete
    5. @quebecker of tree stump

      "Falardeau once claimed he wasn't racist. He then went on to say that he doesn't care if you're "white, black, brown, yellow, purple", as long as you're "with them"."

      what's racist about not caring about your skin colour, mate?

      Delete
  16. Editor, great post. You have nailed the fact that we are stuck with a segment of franco Quebecois society that believes it is perfectly acceptable to discriminate against their fellow anglo/allo citizens. A minority. But they seem to think that Quebec belongs to francophones and not the rest of us, too. Charles Taylor sometimes says that franco Quebecois have a blind spot about other non-francophone citizens. I agree with that characterization. But you can't give up in the face of ignorance. One sensible analogy is to the southern U.S. states in the 1950s. Yes, here its about ethnicity and language, not race/colour with the legacy of slavery. But one thing we have learned about discrimination in the south, in that era, is that it was essentially learned behaviour - perpetrated by parents, teachers, pastors and ignorant braying politicians. It was overcome by resistance and by bridging the racial gap - one encounter between individuals at a time. We have not sunk as low as Mississippi circa 1960 but we can learn from how they overcame discrimination by people of good will struggling - every day, day after day.

    Camille Laurin understood that individual freedom, for his fellow franco Quebecois, was the enemy of the sovereignty project. Keep them in a unilingual ghetto and keep telling them that their "way of life" is threatened. Shades of Orwell, as our dear editor has pointed out. So keep up the struggle. Don't obsess about attempts to restrict individual freedom with silly laws like Bill 14. Yes - object, argue, resist public discrimination as best you can. But this fight can only be won on the long haul by demonstrating every day one on one that no damn government can regulate your private behavior. The arc of modern history bends toward individual freedom and its inexorable.

    I read the comments above and at the risk of censure I have to say that Tony Kondaks and others should back off criticism of folks like ED. Tony, at least ED lives in Quebec and fights the good fight every day. I understand you live in Arizona ? I'll take ED's opinion over yours any time. Why do you waste everyone's time prattling on about separation and partition. I have read your 2012 contribution to Vigile. Complete gibberish. Tony, you don't know shit from clay. I'll keep it simple for you. The best predictor of future behaviour is past behaviour. Separation and hence the partition debate ain't gonna happen. Those of us who live in the real world and who are not prisoners of learned prejudices know that the two solitudes will continue to live together. Our job, as free individual citizens, is to make sure that future together will be "happily ever after". I am confident about that future. I live it every day, like ED. So stop boring me with separation, partition, blah blah woof woof. Go and whack some golf balls near Phoenix, or whatever you expats do to amuse yourselves when you aren't lecturing us about how we should live our lives and build our future.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. FROM ED
      Sandy McTire
      I feel that if Dr. Couillard can get elected on the basis of economy and good government it will end the PQ. As far as eradicating the language laws he could do that with a majority government by taking one step at a time. You mention the south. When James Meredith entered University in Mississippi Attorney general Robert Kennedy sent US marshals and John sent US troops to achieve it. But white people got used to the idea and it's accepted now. When Rosa Parks refused to move on the bus it gave blacks the strength to boycott. The whites got over it. I think the same can happen here if a Liberal government took down the laws starting with bill 14. Francophones would soon see that they can live with it and nobody would be wanting to bring back such stupid laws. If they did they would be such a weak minority it would never happen.
      Do you feel that Anglos should trust the Libs without a promise of English rights more than Dr. Couillard has already given? Ed

      Delete
    2. Sandy McIntyre,

      "But this fight can only be won on the long haul by demonstrating every day one on one that no damn government can regulate your private behavior. The arc of modern history bends toward individual freedom and its inexorable"

      And how, pray tell, will this take place in Quebec which is galloping in the opposite direction?

      "The best predictor of future behaviour is past behaviour. Separation and hence the partition debate ain't gonna happen. Those of us who live in the real world and who are not prisoners of learned prejudices know that the two solitudes will continue to live together. Our job, as free individual citizens, is to make sure that future together will be "happily ever after". I am confident about that future. I live it every day, like ED. "

      So the past 50+ years is not a sufficient predictor of behaviour in Quebec? You really are a masochist.

      Delete
    3. Sandy and Ed: There were Jews who tried to work with the Nazis and in the end, what was their reward? The gas chambers, torture chambers or a shot in the head and a toss into a mass grave.

      What's the payoff? Hmmmm?

      Delete
    4. Sauga, skip the Nazi nonsense. Its so tiresome, and so fatuous. Anglo Quebecers are not analogous to jewish folks in Germany circa 1933. And Marois is not a Nazi, merely a misguided ethnic nationalist on the wrong side of history. Also, I am not working with these sovereignty dolts. They are on the path to self destruction and I am in the bleachers eating popcorn. As Andre Pratt has said - we are watching la lente agonie of the sovereignty movement. Much has changed since you left to make your fortune in Erin Mills, or Meadowvale. But you obviously haven't. Just the same old 1970s misconceptions and prejudices. Sauga, its time to flip your calendar!

      Delete
    5. @Tim Unwin

      Good points, however:
      http://dustymusette.blogspot.ca/2013/01/sandy-mctire.html

      Delete
    6. Sandy, sitting on your hands and hoping isn;t going to fix anything.

      Waiting for the govt to fix itself isn;t a solution to anything and flies in the face of 40 years of evidence to the contrary.

      "The arc of modern history bends toward individual freedom and its inexorable. "

      Not in Quebec it doesn't. The entire basis of Quebec and France society is the subjugation of individual rights for the collective. WTF do you live that you never learned that.


      Delete
    7. McT: Your Mississauga geography knowledge impresses me not. Ask me if I care one iota about what you think about my equating what's going on in Quebec with what happened in Nazi Germany. The Editor doesn't like the analogies as well, but it's my opinion and I fully stand behind what I have written and will continue to write.

      Editor pointed out very eloquently how Anglo bashing has become so commonplace that the la Presse article went through unscathed. You have a government that started out overtly promoting racist rhetoric, so after generation or two, it has become an acceptable norm. Admittedly it caught on faster in Germany, but the Treaty of Versailles broke them. Germany was down and out and needed a scapegoat to restore their spirits. Quebec has established its scapegoats, and is running with that. Blaming and abandoning the Roman Catholic church was not enough.

      The acid test to me to prove the hatred of the minorities has manifested under PLQ-led governments. Bourassa and Charest combined have come out with Bills 22, 178, 86 and 103. Under those regimes, the policy of the Quebec government is now addressing you in French whether you like it or not. Corporate tax returns MUST be filed in French.

      Conclusion: French Quebec society wants it this way. Case closed!

      Delete
    8. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

      Delete
    9. Sauga, please keep on expressing your opinion in the free world. Yes, everyone is entitled to their opinion - but not all opinions have equal value. Bad history and bad analysis only damage your own credibility. I do sincerely appreciate your passion for Quebec issues but, with respect, you strike me as someone who is a mirror image of those dudes at Vigile who think it is still 1970.

      @Tim Unwin re past behaviour being a good predictor - Did Quebec separate from Canada in the last 50 years ? Are young franco Quebecois more, or less, enamoured of separation than they were in 1976 ? Do they speak more, or les, English than they did 35 years ago ? Be patient. Change is happening .

      @cebeug re the entire basis of Quebec society. I disagree. Spend some time with young or older franco Quebecois entrepreneurs or take a vacation in the Beauce and you may change your views. And by all means please read Tim Thomas' opinion piece in today's Gazette, particularly the comment on Warren Magnusson. I think many people who comment on this blog overemphasize the role of government and its ability to engineer Quebec society. Magnusson has it right, in my humble opinion. And I remain an optimist. Far from sitting on my hands - I confine my efforts to the private sphere and I like what I see.

      Delete
    10. Sandy McTire:

      You know nothing about me nor do you know my history of either living in Quebec or being active in that province fighting for what I believe in.

      Therefore, respectfully, I suggest that you judge my words on their own merits without assigning any importance or credibility to them based upon where I live or what I have done.

      Delete
    11. Sandy McTire writes (addressing her comments to me):

      "Why do you waste everyone's time prattling on about separation and partition. I have read your 2012 contribution to Vigile. Complete gibberish. Tony, you don't know shit from clay."

      I am happy to debate with you any writings or opinions I have expressed, Mr. McTire. But I am not able to adequately respond when you are non-specific and only make comments such as "shit from clay" and "complete gibberish".

      You'll have to be more precise than that.

      What things have I said that you disagree with? And why?

      Delete
    12. Sandy McTire writes:

      "Those of us who live in the real world and who are not prisoners of learned prejudices know that the two solitudes will continue to live together."

      Which "learned prejudices" are you referring to?

      As for the "two solitudes" continuing to "live together", Sandy, roughly about 40% of one of those solitudes no longer continue to live with the other solitude. Why? Because over the past 40 years about 500,000 of them have left Quebec for points west and south. Those that continue to stay in Quebec have, continuously, as expressed in public opinion polls, stated their almost unanimous opposition to language laws, such as Bill 101.

      So you may feel there is much "kumbayah" to sing about living in Quebec; others, such as myself, are opposed to human rights violations and segregation and xenophobia and choose to oppose it, expose it, and fight it.

      Delete


    13. Who says driving 500 000 people from their homes is harassment?

      It's social engineering not ethnic cleansing.

      Oh you don;t agree?

      Well you are an immigrant/anglo/italian/jew etc that doesn;t understand the rights of the Quebec people as a minority in the larger majority of the minority of the majority...

      Once the logic runs out the PQ goes to immediately to language/race/background/parentage etc.

      Annoy a separatist, use facts and logic.

      Delete
  17. France will support Quebec?

    French ex-minister admits lying about Swiss account


    © AFP

    France’s former budget minister Jérôme Cahuzac, who until two weeks ago was responsible for cracking down on tax evasion, admitted to having hidden funds in a secret Swiss bank on Tuesday. Judges have now placed Cahuzac under formal investigation.


    By FRANCE 24 (text)


    France's former budget minister Jérôme Cahuzac admitted on Tuesday that he had held a secret bank account abroad – a fact that he has strenuously denied until now.

    His admission comes two weeks after he resigned from the Socialist government over allegations that he had siphoned funds into a UBS bank account in Switzerland in order to avoid paying taxes in France.

    The allegations were published by French investigative website Mediapart in December 2012, prompting prosecutors to open an inquiry.

    On Tuesday he was forced to admit to investigating magistrates that he had lied and was placed under formal investigation for tax fraud.

    'Devastated by remorse'

    On his blog, Cahuzac said he was “devastated by remorse” and begged forgiveness from French President François Hollande.

    “I ask the President, the Prime Minister, my former colleagues in government, to forgive me for the damage I have caused them,” he wrote, adding that he had some 600,000 euros in a foreign bank account that he had held in his name for around 20 years.

    Later on Tuesday, the Elysée presidential palace released a statement condemning the former minister with “the greatest severity”.

    “In denying the existence of this bank account to the highest authorities in France and to the National Assembly, Cahuzac has committed an unforgivable moral error,” the statement read. “Politicians are bound by two imperatives – to set a good example and to tell the truth.”

    French Socialist Prime Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault also issued a statement, expressing his “sadness and astonishment” at Cahuzac’s admission.

    “Any senior politician is expected, more than any other citizen, to respect the law,” he said. “Lies are unacceptable in a democracy.”

    'Political bomb'

    Underlining the damage that the scandal had done to the government and the French political system generally, Olivier Dartigolles, spokesman for the French Communist Party called Tuesday’s news a “political bomb”.

    “During weeks of this soap opera, Cahuzac’s lies have multiplied and multiplied,” he said. “Both the press and the justice system must be praised in the highest terms for bringing this state scandal to light.”

    “He defrauded the tax authorities and then he lied about it while he was minister responsible for fighting tax fraud,” Dartigolles added. “Cahuzac has made an awful contribution to a long list of disgraces that have sullied the politics of the French Republic.”

    Meanwhile, Christian Jacob, head of the National Assembly parliamentary group for the opposition UMP, said his party condemned an act of “unquantifiable severity” and hinted that serious questions would have to be asked of Hollande and Ayrault.

    “I find it hard to believe that the neither the president nor the prime minister were not aware of the situation beforehand,” he said.

    (FRANCE 24 with wires)





    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. dude explain the link between the crooked minister and france's support for quebec.

      Delete
    2. Quebec imports everything from the mothership.

      Our rampant corruption in Quebec is the same as we see with "GSK" and this idiot minister.

      It's limousine socialism. Marois driving around in her Porsche in the house built with money from the construction fraud.

      Like that moron PQ minister of the enviroment for 5 days until his 160Km/Hr speeding tickets in his Porsche came up.

      The rules only apply to the little people. The press focuses attention on Bill 101 etc. Meanwhile we have the most incompetent bunch of losers ever running the govt.

      student, do you shill to sell product also? I think I might have seen you pushing the latest Bieber album sales in a blog. Is that part of the PQ gig or that's a different employer?

      Delete
    3. @cebeuq

      "Quebec imports everything from the mothership. Our rampant corruption in Quebec is the same as we see with "GSK" and this idiot minister."

      and anglo-canadian ethic mishaps are homegrown? is it better?!? what's your point, mate?

      Delete
  18. "I refuse to be exterminated": http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=78JZU3f9e1Q

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Here is her speech verbatim for the record (as well as for posterity’s sake on Google’s search engines):

      I feel that making this blog is important, given the changes that the Parti Quebecois, which is the ruling government of Quebec, that they are attempting to make to language laws in Quebec. And as an anglo living in Quebec, I find it very disheartening that they believe that aggressive measures to protect and promote the French language, at the expense of English, is going to help the cause of French in Quebec. What it has done to me is that it has begun to radicalize me.

      I learned French at a very young age; I always had a natural ease with the language. I started learning it in Grade 3 in Ontario. My father also taught me several words, as I’m half franco-Ontarian. When I was under the age of 10, I think my first French word was “papillon”, meaning “butterfly”; plus, Sesame Street also taught me a few words. And then I moved on to attend French immersion in Alberta, where I learned French throughout my teens, culminating in me actually taking a language exchange program at the university level, to come stay in St. Jean sur Richelieu in 1999, after which I met a French man, and then proceeded to have a child with him, which led to my permanent move here.

      And the things that I love about Quebec are its… you know, its nightlife, its artistic community, its diversity… and that’s why it makes me so sad that, finally after all these years of fighting to feel normal in Quebec and to feel as if I’m not being discriminated against for being Anglo first and French second, that we are returning to old battles that I thought had begun to be resolved in prior decades, in the “oughts”.

      So I, like I’ve said, have always been a proponent of bilingualism and I think that it’s great that we have two different cultures or two different languages in Canada. You know, it’s very common in Europe to speak two or three languages and it’s nice that we can also do that here because there are different subtleties to different cultures that we can learn from each other and that we can enjoy each other more because of the diversity.

      So if the PQ government rids us of diversity, then what are we going to be left with? And what is scary about all of this is the tactics they are adopting are seriously fascist… the fact that they believe they are entitled to legislate what language small children can now learn.

      Why I also became more radical is now they want to move to ban bilingualism in daycares and the education minister has been quite contradictory, at first saying it will confuse kids if they have to learn two languages at school at a young age yet what of anglo or allophone children attending daycares when they’re younger? What, now learning French young isn’t going to confuse them but learning English will confuse young French children, or? I don’t quite follow her logic.

      Delete
    2. So my solution to this nonsense is to begin to refuse speaking French. And I will always try to communicate with people who are struggling and cannot speak English. But, I am now not going to be a closet Anglo and just speak French here because of language laws or because people are ordered in stores to respond to me in French by the government. It’s wrong; it’s wrong.

      We should not have to face the indignity of being legislated out of existence and being deemed second-class citizens and a second-rate language within our home province. It’s preposterous. I can’t believe even that the federal government is allowing this to happen.

      It’s like, we’re so far past the history of the French being suppressed that it’s… they were suppressed, so then we made it up to them, and now they think they have the right to suppress us? It’s hugely hypocritical and it’s wrong. So if you worry about the decline of English in Montreal, I say stop speaking French. Don’t speak it. Doesn’t matter what they write in the law books. The laws can be changed. It’s the lingua franca, the language people speak, that’s going to determine what language ends up surviving. I hope both. But I refuse to be exterminated.

      Delete
  19. ED, I think retail politics will trump ideology all day long. And in 2013 I do not expect any Quebec government to repeal 101 and reinforce my "rights". Bill 14 still has along way to go before it is enacted, in whole or in part. Personally, its enough for me if a Quebec government accepts the federal pact and tries to improve our struggling economy without more statism. The Liberals are the best placed for that. As I said above, we can't carry the Quebec- Mississippi analogy too far. But I play out my personal version of Rosa Parks every day. I speak and live in the language of my choice every day. When some bigot occasionally objects to that - rarely, I hasten to add - I kick their ass (figuratively, of course) in perfect French.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. FROM ED,
      SANDY , Your words are like a breath of fresh air. They are words I used to use myself before I lost a lot of my vocabulary. They tell me I am in the very early stages of Alzheimer's but the verbs and synonyms escape me now. However i can still do the N.Y. times big one and 60%correct answers on jeopardy so I am not worried but I'm happy to that you have put things in a context I agree with 100% but was not able to come up with. You're right about partition, forget it. It will never happen. We are living fine as (as you put it) two solitudes. I'm sure bill 14 will be squashed and after will see what the Liberals come up with. I implore everyone, patience. Ed

      Delete
    2. Sandy writes:

      "And in 2013 I do not expect any Quebec government to repeal 101 and reinforce my "rights". Bill 14 still has along way to go before it is enacted, in whole or in part. Personally, its enough for me if a Quebec government accepts the federal pact and tries to improve our struggling economy without more statism. The Liberals are the best placed for that."

      Why do you put "rights" in quotations, Sandy? Is this a suggestion that they are NOT rights or are questionable?

      You mention a "federal pact". Which federal pact are you referring to?

      You seem to be against "more statism". I think that's great. But the ultimate in statism, as I see it, is Bill 101. Indeed, the Liberal Party of Quebec -- whom you feel is the best option to vote for -- is for more statism in this area and has, during their last mandate as the government of Quebec, increased this statism in the form of Bills 103 and 104.

      I suggest that you consider promoting policies that not just maintain the current status quo of statism but ones that entirely eliminating statism. I refer of course to statism in language laws as they impact what I consider sacrosant areas of life: free speech, free expression, and equality (not to mention the ability to conduct one's business in the language of one's choice).

      Delete
    3. FROM ED
      Tony Kondas, as an author you should know what quotation marks are for and what the word statism means. Read it the way it was written and stop trying to read other things in it. That is so small minded, taking someones speech and twisting it's meaning. As a supposed pundit of politics you should be able to add something worthwhile instead of wasting your time trying to bring down someone who is light years above you in thinking. You are such a picayune person. Ed

      Delete
  20. A few interesting tidbits from the Editor’s link to Episode 1 of Radio-Canada’s piece regarding René Lévesque’s unease with regards to Bill 101 (he was far less enthusiastic about it than was Camille Laurin; in fact, he found it excessive):

    - That as a wartime reporter who was familiar with the horrors of war, Lévesque feared ethnic conflict above all. (@5:53)

    - Former McGill University chancellor and Gazette columnist Gretta Chambers referring to anglophones’ view of Lévesque as the “good cop” to Laurin’s “bad cop”. (@5:05)

    - Yves Duhaime saying that Lévesque was “very attached to the fact that the rights of Quebec’s anglophone minority must be protected, not only by political reality, but first and foremost, because it was a matter of fundamental rights.” (@5:25)

    - Also, that the PQ had heard that there was a “brick coming from Camille”; the first edition of the White Paper on linguistic policy of February 16, 1977 concocted by Laurin’s team created an enormous shock that could destabilize Quebec. (@20:47)

    Lévesque defending the rights of anglophones:

    « C’est quelque chose… j’sais pas, moi… qui crée un malaise, chez moi en tout cas, d’être obligé de faire des lois là-dessus quand je me dis le jour où, bientôt espérons-le, les Québécois comme peuple prendraient la décision de s’appartenir politiquement, il est fort probable que les 9/10ièmes des raisons pour lesquelles on est obligé de légiférer sur la langue en ce moment disparaîtraient. » (@4:28)

    ”It’s something that, well, creates an uneasiness, for me at least, to have to make laws about that, when I tell myself that the day where, soon let us hope, Quebecers as a people would take the decision to belong politically, it would be very likely that 9/10ths of the reasons for which we need to legislate language at this time would disappear.”

    « Alors si l’unilinguisme voulait dire d’enlever ça, moi je crois que ça serait collectivement stupide pis ça ne serait ben ben civilisé parce qu’on reste en Amérique du Nord et ça créerait raisonnablement une mauvaise réputation pour le Québec et ça ne serait pas pratique pour nous. Ça serait étroit d’esprit et un recul. » (@7:28) (when he was a Liberal minister in 1966).

    “So if unilingualism were to mean taking that away, I believe that it would be collectively stupid and it wouldn’t be very civilized because we live in North America and it would reasonably create a bad reputation for Quebec, nor would it be practical for us. It would be narrow-minded as well as a backward step.”

    ReplyDelete
  21. This is an oldie (3 whole months ago!) that also appeared on Reddit but it warrants a reminder:

    Immigrants in our own country
    Rick Blue | Blue Notes | January 19, 2013

    A strange phenomenon has taken place here in Quebec during our lifetime.

    We thought we lived in the nation of Canada, but we find that according to our government, we now live in the “nation” of Quebec. We thought there were two official languages as defined in the British North America Act and the Canadian Constitution, but we find that now according to our government, there is only one official language and in many instances we are not even allowed to publicly display the second one.

    I wonder if there is any other jurisdiction in the world where the identity of a large and well established population, one that had only a couple of generations ago been a vital part of the success of the society, has now been so debased.

    The anglo population of Quebec has become a population of immigrants in their own country.

    This fact is so obvious that even the PQ minister responsible for us has commissioned a song and a video to persuade us that we are not immigrants in our own country, but that we are indeed at home here.

    (We are now so marginalized by law that we need a special minister just to administer us.)

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-jHLP8ej8f4

    We appreciate you trying to “reach out” to us but we know how we feel and we know how your government is treating us, thank you very much Mr. Lisée. And you know, too, otherwise why would it be necessary to spend government money on trying to persuade us otherwise?

    Clearly if this was really Notre Home we would have the same rights as you, wouldn’t we?

    You want to make us feel like this is Notre Home? Simple. Stop treating our language like it was a disease.

    When we are in our homes we are equal with everyone else in our home. There are no first- and second-class citizenship in our homes. In our homes, we don’t fine each other for putting up signs.

    That’s what a real home is, Mr. Lisée.

    You want us to feel that this is our home? Tell us we have the same rights as you. Stop being so petty and mean. You are the government. You can do it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Reply by Renée Houde
      On January 20, 2013 at 5:58 pm

      I am a francophone and I am so embarrassed to be a Québécoise. I have been embarrassed for the past 30 years ever since I have returned to Quebec. I have become an activist for individual rights because I have observed a drastic increasing xenophobic tendency with our separatists who rarely think about repercussions. Their incredible selfishness and extreme arrogance have unfortunately ruined the usually pleasant atmosphere the province used to be famous for, by consistently pitting French against English by pretending to protect the French language whilst denying others their rights.

      I realized after a full year of research on the Internet that the mentality of separatists comes mainly from ignorance and most people know this, but I wanted to make real sure so I communicated mainly with separatists.

      It is very easy to recognize a separatist, they rarely discuss, they simply enjoy insulting you “personnally” hoping to intimidate you. They are also famous for blocking, censoring your posts, sending you viruses, hacking your computer, reporting you to Facebook so you are not allowed to make new friends or reporting you for posting the truth which is not kosher to them. Famous for censuring is OQLF, Impératif Francais, Lisée, Duchesne, Drainville and of course GND, Martine Desjardins and buddies. They must silence the adversary at all costs, Vive la démocratie! Separatists in general are also a little naive unfortunately. Secondly, they have no idea that Quebec has one of the most important debt on the planet and that the rich provinces give us billions of dollars so we do not go bankrupt. In replying, they would dismiss my arguments which were substantiated with respectable links and would point to Lisée, Drainville, Aussant …etc., who claim the opposite. In their defence, they would state that my view was federal propaganda.

      The French media which is mainly separatist leftist, especially Radio-Canada, fails to properly inform le p’tit peuple and the leaders of each successive governments consistently criticizes Ottawa but suppresses all the benefits, in the hope that they might attract a few separatist votes. Very noble!

      Thirdly, you also have to blame the silent majority for not speaking up. The coming out of Bill 14, the worst civil liberties attack which continues to deny all of us our rights, has done it. This embarrassing bill was the last straw that broke the camel’s back.

      Finally, the anglos have decided to stand up and are getting together and organizing a protest against this abominable bill and the aggressive, socially regressive Bill 101. All citizens, francos, allos are especially welcome. Our rights and liberties are not respected. Language discrimination must stop. If we do not stand up, we will deserve what will come to us…dictatorship and collective rights “a la communisme” is already at our door! Your choice. Kill Bill 14 and rid us of the PQ!

      It is truly my opinion that once the separatists are informed about the economic realities of Quebec and they face the realities that “Le pays des merveilles” does not exist, they will throw separatists out the same way they got rid of religion. It will be heaven living in Quebec. Don’t give up, rise up!

      Delete
    2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

      Delete
    3. Sorry R.S
      That story is going to be featured in tomorrow's column so I selfishly deleted your reference..

      Apologies.

      Delete
  22. Ever wonder why we are lacking doctors in Quebec? Perhaps it’s because of these hurdles that even a unilingual francophone would probably fail:

    My battle with the language police as an anglo professional in Quebec
    James Ross Monday, Apr. 01, 2013 (Ed: April Fool’s! Hah! Not!)

    As a newly graduated doctor starting a residency in psychiatry, I decided to go to Montreal, naively thinking it would be interesting to become fluent in “the other official language.”

    At first things went well. I made some francophone friends, and the shopkeepers in our part of town did not switch to English. I understood my francophone patients, and they politely corrected language mistakes to help the new doctor learn.

    I watched “Tout le monde en parle” on TV, took French classes and read L’Actualité magazine, whose subscription department was so flummoxed by a common anglophone name in a doctor’s handwriting that my issues arrived addressed to “Jamos Rosi.”

    I thought I had found my French groove. Near the end of my residency, a temporary staff position in Quebec’s Kafkaesque health system appeared possible.

    People warned me about the exam administered by l’Office québécois de la langue française. Doctors must pass it within four years to keep their licence in Quebec. Many of my “Rest of Canada” colleagues had failed it several times. Anglophones from Quebec, some of whom do not speak French well, are not subjected to the exam.

    I hoped that my dedication to learning French day-to-day would pay off. Being very busy with the transition from residency to practice, I put off taking the exam.

    My training complete, I received a permis temporaire to practise psychiatry. Across the bottom was typed TEMPORAIRE in bold capitals. (Doctors suspended for drug abuse or having sex with patients are not afforded similar humiliation.) Needless to say, it did not get framed and put on my office wall.

    I went to my first French-language exam without any formal preparation, thinking I would see what I needed to work on. Arriving at the OQLF building, an imposing heritage structure armed with security cameras and a high-security entrance, I was greeted at the door by a man with the most incomprehensible regional accent I had ever heard. I figured he was placed there to undermine the confidence of the steeliest anglo professionals.

    A woman with an equally muddy accent checked me in, and I took a seat to wait for my interrogateur to arrive. As I sat with other gallows-faced men and women in suits, I noticed that the columns in the dimly lit lobby were encased in reinforced glass, perhaps to stop doctors, lawyers, architects and other professionals from defacing them. On the walls, OQLF posters proclaimed the importance of using a francophone keyboard and speaking French in public places.

    Finally, someone arrived to guide us to the exam room, where we all wrote disarmingly simple (Grade 6-level) tests of French comprehension. I aced that part.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

      Delete
    2. I hope that all the anglos would follow James Ross into Ontario...

      Delete
    3. student Wednesday, April 3, 2013 at ----> 7:48:00 AM EDT <----:

      i think anglos are important to quebec's cultural balance. i don't think anglos are the "devil" and i don't dream of a "unilingual paradise". so cut the bs on that front too.

      _______________

      student Wednesday, April 3, 2013 at ----> 10:16:00 AM <---- EDT:
      I hope that all the anglos would follow James Ross into Ontario...

      ....Hey folks, know how I alway said there's NO SUCH THING AS A SEPARATIST WITH INTEGRITY?

      'Nuff said!

      Delete
    4. "I hope that all the anglos would follow James Ross into Ontario..."

      Isn;t this where you are supposed to pretend all anglos arn;t the same? Some are nice? You even have an anglo friend and he agree's with Bill 101?

      Whenever there is a comment about a Francophone without specifying a "PQ Quebecer" etc people go all apeshit.

      Where are the masses accusing student of racism when opposite constantly happens...

      Delete
    5. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, April 3, 2013 at 4:45:00 PM EDT

      Well, I for one think that if you do not like where you live or work, just move away.
      However if you like where you live, stay.

      When I was with Le Regiment de Maisonneuve my Sgt used to tell us riflemen that "soldiers that whine and complain are always happy soldiers".
      Maybe it is true with the senior members here?

      Delete
    6. @editor

      "student" 's commnt at 10:16:00 is not from me. can you do something about it? thanks.

      Delete
    7. @ugBSdc

      L'exploitation pétrolière soupçonnée de déformer les poissons

      http://www.lapresse.ca/environnement/201304/03/01-4637347-lexploitation-petroliere-soupconnee-de-deformer-les-poissons.php

      Et c'est pas un poisson d'Avril

      Delete
    8. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, April 3, 2013 at 10:20:00 PM EDT

      @S.R.

      A passer trop ton temps ici va deformer ta cervelle.

      Et c'est pas un petit poisson des chenaux en avril

      Delete
  23. Québec pose le premier jalon de la «gouvernance souverainiste»:

    Gilles Duceppe, Yvon Boudreau and Michel Bédard will each be paid $800 a day (of PUBLIC FUNDS) between now and December to craft a strategy on how to start a new fight with Ottawa.

    Your tax dollars at work:

    http://www.lapresse.ca/actualites/quebec-canada/politique-quebecoise/201304/03/01-4637155-quebec-pose-le-premier-jalon-de-la-gouvernance-souverainiste.php

    ....Hey folks, know how I alway said there's NO SUCH THING AS A SEPARATIST WITH INTEGRITY?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nous avons élu un gouvernement souverainiste,êtes-vous du genre surpris lorsqu'on vous propose des pâtes dans un restaurant italien?

      Delete
    2. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, April 3, 2013 at 4:47:00 PM EDT

      $800 a day!!!!!!
      WOW!!! They'll feel like senators!
      Only in our Great country coast to coast to coast!

      Delete
    3. C'est le prix à payer pour des personnes de gros calibre.

      Delete
    4. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, April 3, 2013 at 5:21:00 PM EDT

      He! Le Chardonnay ils vont l'acheter a la caisse!!!!

      Delete
    5. @resident evil

      "Gilles Duceppe, Yvon Boudreau and Michel Bédard will each be paid $800 a day..."

      how much do you think they should be paid to head this important inquiry?

      Delete
    6. S.R: "C'est le prix à payer pour des personnes de gros calibre."
      Ah yes. Gilles Duceppe is in such great demand that it's necessary to pay $800/day to obtain his services. Kim Jong un was probably already offering $750. That guy just lurches from one public trough to another. I keep expecting to see him with a snorkel so he doesn't have to come up for air as often.
      In Friday's post the Editor described it as the "recycling" of Gilles Duceppe, which I thought was overly generous. Recycling implies that you're taking a worn out item that's no longer of use and reprocessing it to make a new, usable item. I think "composting" is a more apt term for Duceppe's treatment. You know, taking some noxious organic waste mixing it with other detritus and hoping it eventually turns into something benign and useful. I think in Duceppe's case we'll discover why they don't really recommend that you put dog crap in a home composter.

      Dudent said: "how much do you think they should be paid to head this important inquiry?"

      Well, if he was to be paid what he was worth it would be pro bono. No money for Universities, but a collective $2400/day for this crap.

      Delete
    7. @diogenes

      you seem not to appreciate gilles duceppe, but from you comment it's impossible to understand why. do you have part II coming in which you come up with the thoughtful stuff?

      "No money for Universities, but a collective $2400/day for this crap."

      you think assessing the situation of workers affected by the employment insurance program changes is crap?

      Delete
    8. Dudent said: "you seem not to appreciate gilles duceppe"
      Having minored in biology I have a good appreciation for parasites and their place in the food chain, I just can't muster up any for those that are in human form. After 20 years of sucking up my tax dollars we finally got rid of the political equivalent of Jabba the Hutt only to pay him an indexed pension for life and now our transfer payments are going to add $800/day to his pile. I'm rather surprised, Dudent, that as part of a cohort that generally despises the 1%, you like this soon-to-be member. On the surface it would seem surprising that a former card carrying communist doesn't have a problem making about $300k/ year, but like most, they only have a problem with other people making it.

      "you think assessing the situation of workers affected by the employment insurance program changes is crap?"
      Whatever the relative merits of the committee, I think paying three political wankers $800/ day to sit and listen, while other people do the actual work is crap. I think the PQ could have found some far more qualified civil servants and seconded them to the committe for a much lower cost and an equal or better result.
      As for requesting "thoughtful stuff", I think that's typically hypocritical of you to ask for something that you're unwilling or unable to do yourself.

      Delete
    9. 800$ a day is a yearly salary of around 200 000$, or more than what we pay a doctor or an engineer (who is making something useful for society).

      An ex-politician working for a committee? I don't know what the going rate it, but personally I would be satisfied with a third to a half of that amount. It's important to pay politicians who are sworn in well so that they are not tempted by corruption, but I don't see that being the case for veteran politicians with a lifelong pension that pays more than most of us will ever make in our lives.

      Delete
    10. @yannick

      have you checked these guy's cv's mate? they are unique. yes they are friends of the pq, but more importantly they are hyper competent for what they have been appointed for. considering their experience and the job to do, double what the senate butler takes in http://tinyurl.com/cy87uhc is high, but not scandalously high.

      with a mere 70k, as you propose, you would not have had attracted experienced people for this job.

      Delete
    11. @Student

      You still haven't answered the previous question about Duceppe being nothing more than a paper socialist (what pure-blood pinko sucks up that many public funds?) That's hypocrisy #1.

      You also haven't addressed the fact that the group you belong to expects subsidies that aren't provided in part because that money is being directed to initiatives such as these. (hypocrisy #2)

      You asked me earlier, "if Duceppe wasn't paid $800 a day, how much should he be paid for this new appointment?"

      My answer: Not a fucking cent. This new commission is nothing more than a strategy to stoke the flames of conflict between Ottawa and Quebec City. So far it's working in that you, like other dogmatic seppies are buying right into it.

      "Why shouldn't we separate when we have opposite views on the EI matter?"

      Checkmate! The PQ's got your line of thinking framed exactly the way they need to in order to pull this little ruse off.

      See, they're trying to have seasonal workers and other Quebecois who don't work full time all year round that this is a lifestyle that makes up part of their cultural definition.

      What you don't understand, Student, is the same majority that opposed the student protests are the same (predominantly Francophone) majority that doesn't agree that one facet of our society should get a free ride while the rest of the population puts in 52 weeks of work and contributes to the tax system in greater part.

      I'm trying to level with you here Student...

      What the PQ government is doing with you here has been done before in Ancient Rome and many empires after it.

      They're indoctrinating you to believe in a bogeyman enemy...and weaving unrelated conflicts into one collective glob.

      Have you ever read 1984?

      Delete
    12. FROM ED
      It's almost like Marois sees the end coming and wants to reward her sep friends until the money runs out. She'll leave the province flat broke for the next government to repair. The end of PQ signs are everywhere, especially with her. Ed

      Delete
    13. student, you have the skills and qualifications for this job. Have your local PQ troupe leader assign you to that position.

      It's gotta pay way more then getting paid to blog on this forum.

      It will be a nice stop on your way to "no show job" as a PQ civil servant.

      Delete
    14. @resident evil

      i already warned you about making up quotes, didn't i? or was it yannick? anyways why do you do that? aren't you able to debate on stuff people actually wrote?

      @cebeuq

      dude you last comment is empty. i can't respond. sorry.

      Delete
  24. FROM ED
    Louise Harel has announced her candidacy for mayor of Montreal. What do you all think of that ? Ed

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think it's amazing that Montreal can have 2 level of govt at the same time wanting to destroy the economic engine of the province.

      Harel is the PQ visionary for the Island. She isn;t the least bit interested in serving the larger population of Montreal.

      Her Montreal is the PQ vision of Montreal.

      Last time people voted for a known con man over her. That's how badly Montreal wants to stay away from that crazy person.

      Even a 20 year old student could not do as bad a job as her. The student will at least lack 40 years of ingrained hatred of non pure-laine residents.

      It will likely be like the Federal NDP in quebec. Go into the student cafeteria and ask who wants to run for mayor.

      Anybody but Harel.

      Delete
    2. FROM ED
      By now you've heard the news announced this morning that Jean-François Lisée, the Quebec minister responsible for anglophones, has pulled a reverse Richard Holden and quit his party and cushy job to join the resurrected Equality Party as its only current MNA.
      While surprising to some, and certainly a gutsy move to go from being in the government to being a one-man party, the move comes as much less of a surprise to people who have followed Lisée and his actions over the past few months.
      From his appearances at anglophone events to his secret meetings with important figures in the anglophone community, Lisée became fast friends with key people in the community. And though they were very skeptical of what he had to say as the official turd polisher of the Parti Québécois, the mood changed significantly in the past few weeks. Some anglo leaders started to speak of Lisée as the one good guy at the PQ.
      As anglos became more comfortable with Lisée, the other side became less so. Lisée's thinly-veiled attacks on fellow minister Diane de Courcy (responsible for language policy) certainly didn't earn him too many friends, nor did his suggestion that the STM be bilingual. His public comments earned the minister a lemon prize from language group Impératif français.
      According to people with knowledge of PQ cabinet discussions, Lisée was even more disagreeable behind closed doors, questioning language policies, pleading for the party to kill Bill 14 and even questioning some of the fundamentals of Bill 101.
      His views don't represent a complete reversal of position. Lisée was famously responsible for a speech Lucien Bouchard gave at the Centaur Theatre saying anglos are an important part of Quebec. The speech, and statements contained in it, were not universally accepted among his colleagues.
      It remains to be seen just how militant Lisée will be on the other side. Will he call for the repeal of the Quebec language charter and all special protections for the French language? So far, all he's said is that he wants both languages to be equally protected in Quebec (he said something similar at the CBC's recent Living English event, though to the guffaws of the crowd). He also said the fight for French isn't over, and that he will work hard to ensure language equality in other provinces as well. (I guess that means he's a federalist now too?)
      The other question is whether Premier Pauline Marois will replace Lisée. Clearly he's no longer a minister. Will she name someone else as minister responsible for anglophones, or will she decide not to, for fear that someone else might be turned to the dark side?

      Delete
    3. FROM ED
      They are going to build up the equality party. Probably just enough to split the vote again. I bet Marois is delighted. Ed

      Delete
    4. Ummm...Ed...the article you're quoting was taken from Fagstein's blog, which has a tradition of April Fools Day joke articles. Did you not see the tag the blog post was filed under?

      Delete
    5. ED, it's not April 1 anymore.

      Delete
    6. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, April 3, 2013 at 4:54:00 PM EDT

      ED wrote:
      "By now you've heard the news announced this morning that Jean-François Lisée, the Quebec minister responsible for anglophones, has pulled a reverse Richard Holden and quit his party and cushy job to join the resurrected Equality Party as its only current MNA."

      ?????????
      Man were you ever taken!!!!
      So tell us your new found love for JF Lisee, ED.
      It's OK just use your walker to the depanneur and go get a few beers...
      ED = turncoat
      It goes to show the poor guy's emotional state about living in quebec...
      -------------------
      They are going to build up the equality party. Probably just enough to split the vote again. I bet Marois is delighted. Ed"

      I bet Pauline is delighted about you, ED.

      Delete
    7. FROM ED
      My friends I am also delighted. It's a good one. The last thing we need is another party staring now, thanks for filling me in. No one is more delighted than Une Gars it gives him a chance to come up with more insults. He would be such a hit on Craigslist 'Rants and raves". I don't know why he stays here where even the trolls make him look more foolish than he does to himself. Thanks guys.

      Delete
    8. @cebeuq

      "destroy the economy...not interested in serving...worse then a con... crazy...worse than a student... hatred... anybody but harel."

      ok now we know you hate louise harel. we still don't know why, though. can you take a deep breath and reach to the rational roots of your thick emotion? and then share them of course.

      Delete
  25. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYWednesday, April 3, 2013 at 5:19:00 PM EDT

    ED wrote:
    "He would be such a hit on Craigslist 'Rants and raves". I don't know why he stays here where even the trolls make him look more foolish than he does to himself."
    Craigslist?
    LOL!!! LMFAO!!!
    Craigslist is seen by nobody except for creeps and scammers.

    BTW tell me where I insulted you, ED.
    I will hold you accountable, ED.
    It's not wrong to desire JF Lisee a your leader but it would still make you a turncoat, n'est-ce pas, ED?

    ReplyDelete
  26. Pendant ce temps sur la scène internationale...

    La Corée du Nord donne son feu vert à une frappe nucléaire contre les États-Unis

    http://www.lefigaro.fr/international/2013/04/03/01003-20130403ARTFIG00697-la-coree-du-nord-donne-son-feu-vert-a-une-frappe-nucleaire-contre-les-etats-unis.php

    ReplyDelete
  27. S.R. I never understand what you are writing about. In the English speaking world North Korea is often referred to as the hermit kingdom. They are not taken very seriously and they have no strategic nuclear capability. Kim Jong -un and his band of looney generals with bad hats are talking to each other and their pathetic oppressed people. What does this have to do with this blog, SR ?

    Say, wait a second...maybe you are on to something ! Does North Korea in 2013 make you dream of the power of a "free" Quebec ? The little guy in North America, finally free of its evil colonial oppressors standing up to Ottawa and Washington ? Yes - now I am beginning to get your drift SR. But skip the nuclear threat because Quebec is apparently against uranium mining. How about cans of maple syrup at 50 paces - Steven Harper and Barrack Obama on one team against our own special hermit team - Francoise David and Pauline Marois ! Our own made in Quebec weapon massively deployed by two amazing women. The result is a foregone conclusion and plenty of broken cans to feed the starving people of Quebec. S.R. you are a superior strategist. Vive le Quebec Libre ! Terre de Sirop !

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Vos avez beaucoup d'imagination Sandy,vous devriez être scénariste.Je voulais simplement remettre nos petits problèmes d'ordre linguistique en perspective.De plus si les Coréens ne sont que des frimeurs,pour quels raisons les americains déploient-ils leurs effectifs anti-missiles?

      Delete
    2. S.R. that is about U.S. domestic politics and demonstrating to the American folks in Oklahoma that "the security of the american people" is paramount, no matter how looney the threat. It's a gift for Chuck Hagel, to say the least. North Korea couldn't hit Seoul with a stick rocket.

      Delete
    3. @sandy

      "North Korea couldn't hit Seoul with a stick rocket."

      how do you know?

      Delete
    4. Because they don't have any big stick rockets. I should have said they wouldn't hit Seoul. The North Koreans do have some Russian and Chinese surface to surface missles. But this is not a real threat. Its about upping the ante to try and get some attention. Its worked before but it won't this time, even with Dennis Rodman's help. But what do you expect from people who eat dogs ?

      Delete
    5. FROM ED
      Actually Sandy, there is a comparison with North Korea to Quebec. They only can afford to have electrical power 8 hours a day, which is pretty much the way Quebec would be after separation. They might come here with their navy ( I hear they can row very fast) and attack us with the rusty weapons from the Korean war. As far as leadership there is a strong comparison with Quebec. Their leader knows nothing of the world outside his sphere of stupidity. They are on a slippery slope and don't realize it. The people are traumatized like S R and blindly believe what they're told. Others around them are getting fed up with their bullshit. Ed

      Delete
    6. Let's pick ED statements apart to see how well appraised he is on subject...
      "They only can afford to have electrical power 8 hours a day, which is pretty much the way Quebec would be after separation."
      Mere speculation and based on erronous facts. Hydro Quebec will operate as normal, besides new englands depends on HQ. Verdict: yet another guestimation from ED.
      "Their leader knows nothing of the world outside his sphere of stupidity."
      There are reports and reliable evidence that Kim Jong Eun was educated in Switzerland, and is very aware of things western, to include the NBA which he's a fan of.
      Verdict: ED is navigating the rough seas of subjects he has very little knowledge of.

      Delete
    7. @sandy

      yes there's a big difference between could and would. thanks for correcting.

      Delete
  28. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYThursday, April 4, 2013 at 7:27:00 AM EDT

    Why is there a predominent culture of mediocrity in quebec society?

    This from the PQ, about that EI commision, led by Duceppe:
    " La question de la formation de la main-d'oeuvre est «intrinsèquement liée» à l'assurance-emploi."

    What does that sentence actually mean?
    A translation:
    "The subject of job training is intimitely linked to unemployment".
    Hmmmm.... so in quebec, all workers will eventually end unemployed?
    The present quebec vision for creating jobs involves being on the pogey?

    Only in quebekistan, I guess.

    Here in Alberta it is "train for a job, pay into RRSPs and retire in 40 years".
    In mediocre quebec it is "«Il faut que les Québécois puissent exprimer leur mécontentement face à la réforme (de l'assurance -emploi)»"
    http://www.lapresse.ca/actualites/quebec-canada/politique-quebecoise/201304/03/01-4637155-quebec-pose-le-premier-jalon-de-la-gouvernance-souverainiste.php?utm_categorieinterne=trafficdrivers&utm_contenuinterne=cyberpresse_B13b_politique-quebecoise_559_section_POS3
    ---------------------
    Why can't quebecois be more industrious instead of acting like addicts on crack?
    Why can't quebecois in Gaspesie or in Abitibi all make a statement and say enough!
    Why can`t quebecois start their own jobs? Say no to unions? Get together and start a business?
    Why? Why the mediocrity?

    Here in Alberta, the EI legislation is a non-issue.
    Here in Alberta there are jobs for all, if one looks for a job.
    Here in Alberta there a vibrant and positive wave of enterpreneurship.
    Unions are almost non-existant and mainly for government jobs.

    Whenever a natural disaster in quebec occurs, the quebecois all say "ou est mon cheque du gouvernement?"
    In Alberta? Fuck waiting after the government. Let's roll up our sleeves and get to work.

    That is why quebec is condemned, as a society, to eternal mediocrity.

    I CHALLENGE ANYONE HERE TO PROVE ME WRONG.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alberta's prosperity is due to living on top of oil. Same as Saskatchewan and Newfoundland.

      Of course it's much easier to believe that it's due to your work ethic than to happenstance, and it makes you feel better to boot.

      Delete
    2. @Yannick:

      Valid point. But Quebec is also sitting on huge proven reserves of cleaner oil in the Gaspe. Citizens there are rabidly against its exploitation. Preferring meagre existences, probably never seen or expected better?
      Either way the culture of work ethics is not prominent in Quebec's far regions, replaced by a culture of dependance.
      Back to Alberta: doesn't matter if it has oil. Ranchers, farmers and all portions of Alberta's active population have strong work ethics. Success stories abound there.
      The only lasting success story that I am aware of from la belle province is in the Beauce region. Actually more quebecois should take example on the Beauce's vibrant enterpreneur sector.

      Delete
    3. Oh, I am by no means holding Quebec out as an example.

      But what Saskatchewan and Newfoundland show us is that provinces that were on equalization payments for decades and were stagnating can all of a sudden find their economies booming and jobs abounding once they start getting oil out of the ground. It's no accident that the three provinces with the highest GDP/capita are also oil producers. Other than these three, only BC has a good economy.

      I can totally get on board with culture of dependance - I noticed the same in New Brunswick. People who made a habit of working until they got their "stamps", then going on EI until it ran out, rinse and repeat. Hopefully Harper's new EI rules will put an end to that nonsense. People will have to find a job or move where there is one.

      Delete
    4. FROM ED


      Y - A - W N !

      ED

      Delete
    5. "But what Saskatchewan and Newfoundland show us is that provinces that were on equalization payments for decades and were stagnating can all of a sudden find their economies booming and jobs abounding once they start getting oil out of the ground."

      Let's say we would produce as much oil as Newfoundland, it would not nearly have the same impact on our finances simply because our population is 16 times larger than the population of Newfoundland.

      Delete
    6. It won;t have the same impact on our finances because the PQ will never allow it.

      Working to built a citizens own future through jobs isn;t a strategy the PQ is interested in.

      Citizens that can make their own living or navigate life on their own are not going to be sitting around waiting for handouts from their govt.

      The PQ depend on all the unemployed (many are un-employable) to constantly complain about federalism. This is their voter base.

      People that have jobs and participate in the global economy are not insular and isolated like the PQ voter waiting at home for his next unemployment cheque.

      25% of students are taking science/math/engineering etc. 75% of jobs these days require engineering/math/computers/etc.

      This disonnect is the basis of the PQ. Students educated in things that will never find jobs. Meanwhile companies can;t find workers that have qualifications.

      We end up with large class of un-employable people in Quebec where their skills are totally useless for the economy.

      This group of people are the core of the PQ voter.

      Unemployable because they never invested in an education that would be useful. Trapped. No ability to speak the language of business. No ability to make a living for themselves. The PQ loves the fact these people are totally dependent on them.

      They will always vote PQ because they have no other options.

      It's not like they can pack up and get a job in Toronto or any other city. They can;t speak the language and "Quebec studies" isn;t a useful degree inside Quebec let alone out in the real world.

      Trapped in a world of Quebec welfare with the PQ constantly encouraging them with "comissions" to stand around and complain about their "condition".

      Only in Quebec is going to a commission and endlessly complaining about "rights" seen as a possible solution to a problem of getting off their asses and getting a job.

      Delete
    7. cebeuq,

      "People that have jobs and participate in the global economy are not insular and isolated like the PQ voter [...]"

      Do you remember who was supporting NAFTA in the early 1990s?

      Delete
    8. If Canada go NAFTA the PQ were hoping it would help unravel the country.

      Didn;t happen!

      The PQ only vote based on how things will hurt Canada. That's the only measuring stick they use.

      The PQ were hoping NAFTA would mean more "Quebec cultural embassies" around the world next to Canadian embassies.

      The PQ of 2013 would not support NAFTA. They won;t even let fucking construction workers from Ontario in. Maple syrop monopolies. Chicken boards. Milk boards. Cheese boards etc.

      Quebec can;t handle NAFTA. NAFTA is only for disgusting capitalist pigs that work in business. The real PQ voter gets shielded.

      The PQ voter won;t lose the 3 month per year "caisse croute" stand up in Shawinigan from NAFTA and that's all the PQ cares about. Thankfully the federal govt has stepped in to stop paying PQ voters for the other 9 months of the year.

      Delete
    9. "If Canada go NAFTA the PQ were hoping it would help unravel the country.
      The PQ only vote based on how things will hurt Canada."

      The goal was not to hurt Canada. The goal was to open a new market to be less dependent on the canadian market. That was done thinking of independence, of course.

      "25% of students are taking science/math/engineering etc. 75% of jobs these days require engineering/math/computers/etc. [...] We end up with large class of un-employable people in Quebec where their skills are totally useless for the economy."

      That must explain why our economy grew faster than the economy of Ontario during the last few years.


      Delete
    10. When you have virtually no economy any increase is a massive %

      It's just optics for the little people to think Quebec isn;t an economic basket case.

      Delete
    11. Personally I think its good that Quebec is not running to exploit every drop of oil like some of the other provinces. The environmental costs and long term damage in my opinion outweight the benefits. IMO the tarsands are a national embarassment. However it is quite hypocritical of Quebec to take the equalization payments and other federal money which is largely derived from oil sands revenues. I think Canada needs to stop relying so much on one resource..oil..at some point alternative energies will come along and make oil obsolete.then what.

      Alberta in my opinion is thinking short term..they should have used the Norwegian model which controlled growth and didnt exploit at any cost. Their royalty system is far too low..they could have raked in a lot more money long term and controlled the boomtown of Fort McMurray much better. People seem to think boomtowns are great and what we should all aspire to become..the reality is that boomtowns are ridicilously expensive..poorly planned..often turn to bust after 10 years or so. The ideal is slow steady growth..instead of crazy up and down cycyles.

      Of course the tar sands are not near any major population centre so its easy to ignore all the environmental costs..long term the costs will outweight any short term benefits. But as is often the case people only think short term..its all about making money now and who cares about the long term damage. Very short-sighted and very typical North American view of things. We are spoiled with vast amounts of land which makes us think we are doing no harm since most of the mines/oil development are far away from major cities.

      Of course we need mines and oil but we could do so much more to conserve and move towards cleaner energy. Canadians are among the most wasteful people in the world..how many times do people leave their lights on all day in their house..leave their cars idling..use silly remote starters because they cant deal with being cold for a few minutes..drive huges suvs most of the time..take their cars on short trips instead of walking/cycling.

      Delete
    12. Alternative energies arn;t coming around for a long long time.

      The oil sands have been in development for 50 years. It's just that the greenies suddenly realized it. Over the 50 years the technology to separate oil from the sand has become more efficient and it will become ever more efficient as they keep going.

      We are going to be pouring oil in our cars for many many years to come still.

      I'm much more interested in stopping to buy oil from Saudi Arabia and all these other repressive regimes where we fund terrorism and stone age governments.

      This has the real effect of saving lives today.

      If a few thousand acres of tundra in the middle of nowhere get dug up and pushed around and we get hundreds of years of economic activity from that it seems a good trade.

      Wait until you find out that I'm all for nuclear power too! That;s the best power source we've got. Even some totally crazy greenies are starting to understand the science even. For example Patrick Moore who started greenpeace is even realized the stupidity of his previous beliefs and now supports nuclear.

      The "science is settled" crowd in general isn;t capable of understanding the issues. That's what happens when you have a bunch of poli sci majors and no scientists.



      Delete
    13. Oh look, Quebec's doing great today! Buying business for friends and union members. Grow grow grow baby!

      Quebec Entrepreneurial spirit showing through. NOT!

      Investissement Québec has earmarked $1 billion U.S. to finance purchases by world airlines of Bombardier Inc.’s future CSeries airliner.

      Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/Quebec+puts+billion+finance+Bombardier+CSeries+sales/8191627/story.html#ixzz2PWX8F8pt


      Delete
    14. Am I the only one who finds irrelevant the speculation on whether independent Quebec would be prosperous or not? Isn't it more relevant to ask what Quebec is still doing in Canada? Why hasn't it left yet? What is stopping it from leaving and realizing its economic potential?

      We are told that Quebec would be economically viable. We are told that Quebeckers do not identify with Canada. At the same time, there were only 2 referenda which featured soft questions on association not separation. On these 2 questions, No has won both times.

      Maybe some Quebeckers do identify with Canada after all? Maybe concerns about economy are valid? Or maybe it's this: Quebeckers do not like Canada, and economy would be ok but not as good as with Quebec inside Canada. If that's the case, I'd say you made your choice. You went for the elevated standard of living, so live with the consequences of that choice. Comfy life, no pays, or less comfy life with a pays. Choose one, and don't bother me with projections on independent Quebec's economic prowess. It's irrelevant until you finally make a decision, instead of hanging in between and wasting people's time.

      Delete
    15. Adski, I share your view on separation and the same goes for partition. Its just a lot of meaningless gabble about predicting an improbable future. The last referendum was 18 years ago and counting. There is no sign of another referendum. A whole new generation has grown up without any burning desire for separation, whatever it may entail.

      The idea of separation is like a stone thrown into the edge of a Laurentian pond about 1965. Like the splash of that stone the ripples of energy that radiate outward from the initial burst of passion for separation grow weaker and weaker as time passes and the distance from the initial splash increases. I was around in the 60s and 70s and from my personal observation the sovereignist fervour has greatly diminished. The ripples are getting smaller, and smaller, and somewhere out in the middle of the pond they will disappear from sight in the wind blown surface.

      It's time we stopped trying to watch the diminishing ripples and get on with improving life in the pond circa 2013.

      Delete
    16. @sandy

      "The ripples are getting smaller, and smaller, and somewhere out in the middle of the pond they will disappear from sight in the wind blown surface."

      yes this is what you can hope for. it's called assimilation. and it would be a pity.

      or maybe the wind has changed and the ripples will grow bigger.

      Delete
    17. "I share your view on separation and the same goes for partition. Its just a lot of meaningless gabble about predicting an improbable future."

      Separation is gabble. Endless, lots of talk with no follow through, the same stuff, Quebec will be prosperous, it will be free, just watch out....except that what is it still doing in Canada? And why hasn't there ever been a referendum on separation, only on association? And what made people reject even that?

      Partition is not gabble. Talk of partition is always reactive. Have you ever heard anyone start droning on about partition? I haven't. I only hear about partition in reaction to the talk of separation. Once the talk of separation ceases for a moment, so does the talk of partition.

      Partition can only become meaningless gabble if Quebec (finally) separated. But since Quebec separation is just gabble, partition might never get its chance to become gabble.

      Delete
    18. Student, perhaps my metaphor was obscure ? But on the other hand, you are a student. I meant that the energy required to separate Quebec is fading as time goes by. I see no sign whatsoever that the wind is changing or that any re energizing of the sovereignty movement is or will happen. Sooner or later even the Energizer Bunny stops running.

      And Adski, you must have been educated by Jesuits ! When does the reaction to gabble cease to be gabble ? Or is partition merely inchoate gabble ? Damned if I know. But I'll be content if neither of us ever debate separation again. Let's make a pact, if Jesuits are allowed to do that.

      Delete
  29. UN GARS BIEN SYMPATHIQUE DE CALGARYThursday, April 4, 2013 at 12:06:00 PM EDT

    "FROM ED


    Y - A - W N !

    ED"

    -----------
    Funny that most posters here are ebgaged in an interesting conversation as ED seemingly feels detached.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. @ Michel Patrice 11:51 - Good Point about NAFTA circa 1990, but in 2013 who is very opposed to any changes to the supply management system for dairy products etc in the proposed free trade agreement with the EUC ? The "times they are a changin" as ED would say.

      Many of the points raised this morning about Quebec's economy echo Alain Dubuc's 2006 book : Eloge de la richesse. Also see the March 13, 2013 interview in the Globe & Mail Report on Business with Michel Patry, the director of the HEC, who comments on the deficit of entrepreneurs in Quebec and other Quebec attitudes that result in Quebec lagging behind the ROC. It's available on line if you care to google it. This general analysis of Quebec's problems is widely understood and accepted in the business and economics community and is no longer a radical perspective. As Dubuc has stated (and Un Gars, above) Quebec is slipping into a "quiet mediocrity".

      Regardless of anything that is said on this blog the statist "Quebec Model", rooted in obsolete social democratic ideas borrowed from Europe over the last 50 years is approaching a wall. "The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money" as Margaret Thatcher so aptly put it. Quebec, as a society, must do a better job creating wealth and I don't mean by raising taxes. We are running out of other people's money and the people who are presently in charge in our National Capital have no idea what to do about it.

      Delete
    2. Sandy Mc Tire,

      I am aware of all those problems that Québec has and the issue of supply management is complex and I am not sure what to think of it. But let's make a long story short : I too find that Québec is slipping into a quiet mediocrity and stagnation.

      Things were not the same in 1990 you seem to say. What happened since then?

      Delete
    3. FROM ED
      Une gars. the yawn was supposed to be published next to your bragging about Calgary but the machine placed it elsewhere. Your bullshit gets tiring. Ed

      Delete
    4. Michel, I would date Quebec's economic difficulties to the 1960s when the economy was expanding rapidly and government revenues were growing apace. Quebec got the spending versus revenue equation out of balance and that was exacerbated by a social democratic impulse to help Quebec's economy catch up with Ontario by government intervention. That's a simplistic summary but the result was a failure to pay attention to the revenue side of the balance sheet and to ensure that enough $ were spent on the real foundations of future growth - see, for example the shocking failure of so many Quebec students to graduate from high school. The NAFTA support was about getting more markets for Quebec products. A good idea but Mulroney was able to protect supply management. If that had not happened Quebec's support would have been less certain.

      But now with both the Asia Pacific deal and the EU deal supply management is under the microscope. Mulroney dodged the bullet but Harper can't. I disagree with you in one sense about supply management. It is not conceptually complex at all. It's essentially a system to restrict free competition. Perhaps for honourable motives such as helping small farmers in areas where its more difficult to operate because of geographic realities, or to ensure that the folks in Trois Rivieres are drinking milk from Quebec cows. But it is pernicious because once established, its hard to leg out. Farmers that are marginal under a supply management system may go out of business without it. And all of them have an asset, which they have paid for, called "quota" which would have $0.00 value if free competition were suddenly imposed. But supply management dampens innovation and, obviously, is not consumer friendly. So the tricky part (and here, Michel, I agree it becomes complex) is balancing our wish to gain access to bigger markets without destroying our agricultural sector. That would be unpopular in Quebec and elsewhere in Canada where rural depopulation is a big issue. This is not really a Quebec/language issue so I guess I have digressed and my apologies to the readers who don't give a damn about supply management. In closing, I think it has a special resonance in rural Quebec because it has artificially propped up farmers in a very tough climate and the farming life, Terroir, artisanal cheese etc. have an understandable romantic and historical attraction. And look at the shameless subsidies of agriculture in France !! La Mere Patrie !

      Enough. I know our watchful Editor expects us all to argue constantly with each other on this blog about language laws etc but I do love a good Quebec Brie...or a slice of the sublime "Cinderella" (are goats under supply management - I hope not) and then Alfred Le Fermier...Hey, I'm gone for my dinner. Bon fin de soiree Michel !

      Delete
  30. If you go to Thailand, do you expect the clerk at a train or bank to talk to you in English?
    If you want people in Quebec to speak/accept English then why not have the rest of Canada speak/offer French as well?

    ReplyDelete
  31. "If you go to Thailand, do you expect the clerk at a train or bank to talk to you in English?"

    Yea actually I do. That's what tourism requires.

    And having travelled to lots of these places I can say that they usually make the effort to speak to you even if they don;t speak ANY english. 99% of other people in the world like to show you how much english they have learned even with little exposure to it.

    Of the 50 countries I've travelled to in the world the WORST for rude ticket people used to be France.

    They would look at you with utter distain when you spoke English or shitty Quebec french.

    I've heard even France has cleaned up it's act in the last 10 years tho and now has ticket takers that can be nice about it.


    In Japan I was in a post office in a tiny little town. Not a single english speaker around.

    Goto the local post office.

    They had an entire book of "post office transactions".

    The lady opened the book, found the "what would you like" in Japan. Flipped the book around and it said in English. I found my "I'd like to send a letter" line and showed it to her.

    Back and forth we went pointing to lines in the book.

    Totally unlike Quebec. As we hear in the language comission the other day "If you can;t speak french to the bus driver, you should walk".

    Watching TV in US the other day. They had some border uards unable to speak spanish to the "border runners". No problem. The govt has a 24x7x365 translation company that can be called up and put on speakerphone so the discussion can take place.

    Imagine this happening in Quebec. You go to the hospital and you can;t speak french. They bring you in the room, dial up translation, put it on speakerphone and away you go.

    Imagine the INSULT. Allowing the transaction to take place. Hard to know how many laws that situation would violate in Quebec. Rights of workers etc.

    Meanwhile common sense and human decency is totally lost.

    The PQ Quebec has it all ass backwards as usual.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Damn cebueq, you beat me to him.

      Go I love it when these mouthbreathers talk about shit they have no idea about.

      Try harder next time, seppie...Thailand has got to be one of the biggest non-English countries that can accommodate Anglos on a broad scale.

      Maybe next time he'll throw the Philippines or India at us.

      Delete
    2. @RE

      The thing is of course is in the other countries people see language as simply an obstacle to be overcome and overcome easily.

      IE call a translator, get somebody to translate it for you etc.

      People are interested in being helpful, assisting their fellow human beings etc.

      In Quebec the goal is to prevent all transactions except french ones from taking place. It's more important to shut the transaction down and "file a grievance" to the OLQF etc.

      The only objective here is the process of OLQF and rights.

      The end result of the services being provided are of no interest. IE witness the useless working of city of montreal.

      If we can;t speak french and arn;t allowed on the bus how far does this thinking go?

      For women being raped is "No meas no!" not allowed in Quebec?

      Rape should be ok if a woman screams "No" and not "non?"

      In Quebec thinking, it violates the rights of the police to listen for scream for help in english. Forget the person needing help. Stupid person needs to address me in french. Fuck them. Let them die.

      Rights on top of rights on top of rights to the point it's all meaningless nonsense.

      Delete
    3. @cebeuq

      dude with this last bit there about raped women and people let to die you deserve drama queen of the day award. congrats!

      Delete
  32. Great article. Very interesting comments; some so philosophical, others not so much.

    Here is my story; and probably similar to many other English Quebecers. I am a typical Anglophone Quebecer (orally bilingual) married 43 years to a francophone; two adult children (bilingual) living only kilometers from me and each other on the west island, 5 grandchildren. Son and children are more French than English; daughter and children are more English than French. The children that went to French daycare are more bilingual than the two that didn’t. My spouse’s large family are bilingual francophones. We have a mixture of many friends; anglos and francos. Language was never an issue, and we avoided politics.

    In the last year everything has changed. True colors are immersing. Some of my anglo family and friends are finally speaking up and fighting for their rights; others remain silent; not wanting to rock the boat. Most of my franco friends and family have become very defensive of their language which leaves me feeling betrayed. In fact; they seem to share a sense of righteous dominance. And those francophones that are not so vocal appear to be indifferent.

    Family members that I have known and loved all my life have actually told me that I should consider myself fortunate because most minority groups are not so well treated. (!*!?*!)

    This situation is not only degrading from a political view, but at a personal level, it is causing much havoc between family and friends.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. *Immersing = emerging

      Delete
    2. For socialists that spend so much time worrying about "world peace" etc it seems bizarre that they would not be able to recognize that they are destroying the social fabric of Quebec.

      In the mind of a PQ person the only goal is separation. If Quebec becomes a fascist state that flames ethnic tensions along the way that's of no importance.


      Delete
    3. I'm not sure what place socialism has in Quebec. The taxes are high, but not spent on the needy (mostly lost to corruption). Taxes are also high in capitalist economies, except they go into ailing out corporations and on beefing up police forces to deal with potential "uprisings".

      No private enterprise in Quebec? On the contrary, it's alive and kicking, completely out of reach of Normes du Travail, just go to ratemyemployer.ca and see what people have to say about their so called "job providers", and I'm talking all people, in English and French, and not just "lazy" Quebeckers. Nothing but white collar sweatshops around. Squeeze the juices out of people and replace them. Kick them to the curb when they burn out. Lean, mean, flexible.

      High bureaucracy? It's there in every modern state, in every complex society, regardless of the economic system.

      Culture? Definitely capitalist: materialism, consumerism, consumptionism, greed. What follows is a bureaucracy full of civil servants who do not know the meaning of civil service. Instead, they're in the government and public sector to make money.

      Unions? No longer fighting the fight. They're more like small state corporations, just waiting for their cut and nothing else.

      I'm still waiting to see this "socialism" in Quebec. So far, nothing on the horizon.

      Delete
    4. Family members that I have known and loved all my life have actually told me that I should consider myself fortunate because most minority groups are not so well treated. (!*!?*!)

      SandySpeaks, about this comment made by your family members who appear not realize that anglophones co-built Quebec along with francophones, I wonder whether you have read the Editor’s article about the “Seven Dirty Lies of the Sovereignty Movement”. Lie #1 states “Quebec Anglos are the best treated minority in the world.”

      Also, Quebec Affairs columnist Don Macpherson at the Gazette wrote an article on this topic as well:
      Anglos in Quebec the ‘best-treated minority’? Think again

      It’s certainly not anglophones who can sue for receiving a Sprite instead of a 7-Up and receive $12,000 in compensation, as did this language crusader, who has been described by airline staff as “beyond arrogant”:

      http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/air-canada-ordered-to-pay-12000-to-passenger-unable-to-order-drink-in-french/article600774/

      http://news.nationalpost.com/2011/07/14/air-canada-ordered-to-pay-12k-to-man-who-couldnt-order-7up-in-french/

      http://www2.canada.com/calgaryherald/iphone/news/latest/story.html?id=5098776

      http://www.moonbattery.com/archives/2011/07/the-12000-can-o.html

      Delete
  33. Lord Dorchester

    I go to Paris at least once a year and have noticed the change in attitude towards English speakers. Even if addressed en francais, I've noticed if they (cashiers, ticket takers etc) detect a hint of English in your accent, they switch to English. To them its an opportunity. An opportunity to practice a very important other language (which is how normal people behave) and incidentally a key ingredient to good customer service. A concept the PQ has no interest in. Banning languages from view and pretending we don't live in a bilingual city hasn't helped anyone move forward.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Et je suppose que vous avez fait tous les commerces en France...Mdr!

      Delete
  34. Le Québec sera français ou (éventuellement) anglais, mais il ne sera pas bilingue...

    http://pierreyallard.blogspot.ca/2013/04/le-quebec-sera-francais-ou.html

    ReplyDelete
  35. Philippe Couillard (Tout le monde en parle, 24 mars 2013) :

    «Pour un enfant, apprendre une LANGUE ÉTRANGÈRE se fait mieux au début, dans les jeunes années, et ça se fait dans un processus d’immersion, beaucoup plus que par deux cours par semaine de «I am, you are». Ce n’est pas comme ça que l’on apprend l’anglais»

    Il serait donc en accord avec les propos Madame Malavoy?L'anglais,langue étrangère?

    ReplyDelete
  36. Je trouve particulier que les anglophones crient à l'intolérance quand ils ont interdit l'apprentissage du français pendant 100 ans et que jusque dans les années '70, ils affichaient uniquement en anglais partout et refusaient de servir les clients francophones en français.

    À cause de leur persistance à nous mépriser, il a fallu créer la loi 101. Et aujourd'hui, ils ont un regain d'agressivité. Leur instinct naturel d'assimilateur a ressorti sans doutes. Ils exigent rien de moins que l'abolission de la loi 101 afin de leur permettre à nouveau d'afficher UNIQUEMENT en anglais et d'obliger les consommateurs Québécois à faire leur commerce en anglais et SEULEMENT en anglais.

    Les anglophones disent qu'on leur interdit de parler anglais. En fait, on le sait que ce n'est qu'un prétexte pour nous culpabiliser. Ils peuvent déjà se faire servir en anglais presque partout au Québec et rien dans la loi interdit l'utilisation d'autres langues, ET ILS LE SAVENT. Non! Ils se battent pour l'UNILINGUISME ANGLAIS au Québec. Ils n'acceptent pas leur statut de minorité et, au nom de la mondialisation, ils exigent un retour à l'unilinguisme anglophone au Québec.

    Tout leur acharnement ne vise que cela. Le supposé bilinguisme n'est qu'une passerelle temporaire. Ils vont ensuite exiger des services uniquement en anglais dans certains coins du Québec qu'ils étendront de plus en plus partout où ça compte. Les anglophones ont toujours fait cela.

    ReplyDelete
  37. FROM: Military exemption stats not public after eight days

    The PQ says its statistics on children with a military exemption is still not complete, more than a week after Diane De Courcy declared that the majority were doing all their schooling in Quebec.

    On March 20th, the language minister stated in both a press release and an information sheet that the PQ's observations led it to believe that most of these children were not in Quebec temporarily. "The majority will end their schooling in Quebec," said De Courcy's information document, tabled in a National Assembly committee hearing. The minister's press release went further: "In the majority of cases...their children will do all their schooling in Quebec."

    CJAD has spent the past 8 working days calling and writing to the minister's press secretary, and the education ministry, requesting access to the information the minister used to come to this conclusion. In particular, CJAD is asking what percentage of these students complete all their schooling and graduate in Quebec, and how this is measured. However, this information has still not been disclosed.

    Today, the press secretary for the Education minister, Mathieu LeBlanc, told CJAD that the ministry's information in this area is "still incomplete", but that he hoped to be able to produce an answer by the end of the day.

    Sample replies:

    Realist posted on 04/02/2013 03:59 PM
    To quote M. Chrétien "A proof is a proof. What kind of a proof? It's a proof. A proof is a proof. And when you have a good proof, it's because it's proven." even if it’s incomplete.

    PineGal posted on 04/02/2013 04:13 PM
    How can these people be trusted? The report isn't ready because they are slanting the results in their favour maybe???

    Jim posted on 04/02/2013 04:31 PM
    No big surprise. One has to ask what kind of Que-angaroo court takes place when open public inquiries are held with such obvious disdain for the facts and with dire conviction to get your point across regardless of whatever anyone has to offer to the contrary. De Courcy and her party envisioned the outcome of the hearings before they began...it’s a biased PR campaign more than open public forum to consider different points of view. The way she presented her case to members of the English school board for the Québec city area would never have held up in a court of law. They were ambushed with baseless references to data which she claimed supported their position.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It sounds like the PQ has been caught in a lie in their haste to shoot down Quebec City's English school board. Or, at the very least, inventing data on the fly and presenting “incomplete information” as fact. I know of a certain schoolboy who would purse his lips and tut-tut at anyone who attempted to do this on an internet blog, never mind in an official government communiqué.

      Delete
  38. Quebec is not a French society. It never has been and it never will be. It has always been multilingual, Montreal especially. If we're to look at history, and if both of our official languages are not to be treated equally, then French is truly Montreal's second language. The separatists ignore the fact that almost the entire cities of Montreal and Quebec City were built by the British. Despite this, in the most authentically British neighbourhoods of both cities you frequently see re-enactments of colonial New France. Ha! Quebec City deserves an English school board because the city was built by the British and the revenue the city receives from it's "Colonial New France" Old Town is actually thanks to British architects. The city's tourism sector would be dead without this. I don't care if there are only 12 students left in the English Quebec City school board, the education of those 12 children is a constitutionally guaranteed right that needs to be respected.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Vous avez raison (pas totalement) mais les temps changent...Faut évoluer mon vieux.

      C'est la vie :)

      Delete
  39. This comment has been removed by the author.

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