GOP Select New Leader

Better than Sarah Palin, I say. (Onion News)

Climate Change Debate Starts at 6pm

If you're reading this post roughly around the time I'm posting it, the 2009 Munk Debate starts in about 15 minutes so you still have enough time to sign up and watch it live on-line.

As mentioned in this post, the subject of the debate is climate change and it pits George Monbiot of the Guardian and Elizabeth May of the Canadian Green Party against Bjorn Lomborg the "Skeptical" Environmentalist and Nigel Lawson.

UPDATE: Debate has started. It is also streaming live at Grist.com , The Mark News, The Globe and Mail, The Canada Int'l Council.

ANOTHER UPDATE: Why isn't Elizabeth May our PM? She is kicking Bjorn Lomborg's ass.

LAST UPDATE [8:10PM]: Wow. Lomborg's diabolical sophistry was a thing of monstrous, evil beauty. I no longer think of him as a "soft-in-the-middle" sceptic. He may be one of the most dangerous sceptics out there. Bravo to May for taking him to task repeatedly. She scored the best debating point of the night when she demanded to know why it is that he and his think tank, while claiming to want to come up with solutions for the poor of the world,
were silent when $4trillion was spent bailing out the banks and only ever seem to decry spending money on climate change mitigation. She went on to accuse him of being a propagandist. Lomborg shouted her down and came on all slick and lizardy but never answered her questions.

Without a doubt though, Monbiot was brilliant and while I think May made some of the best points on the Pro side, Monbiot was the most persuasive speaker of the night.

As for Lawson... a blithering idiot. When the debate veered into discussion of peak oil, he demonstrated that despite being a policymaker at one point in the UK government, he doesn't understand even the simplest points of the energy scarcity issue.

I suspect this debate will be available for viewing via the Munk Debate website. I can't say watching it was enjoyable. But I did come away with a greater respect for May and Monbiot.


BREAKING TELEVISION RATINGS AS WELL AS HEARTS Sunday’s Grey Cup game drew the largest television audience in CFL history, watched by more than six million Canadians on TSN (Truth and Rumours). How many of them know who the 13th man was? Just wondering.

I’VE BEEN THERE Don Cherry was on Toronto sports radio station Fan590, offering advice to Ken Miller, where the Saskatchewan Roughriders’ last-play gaffe is getting more analysis than the Zapruder film. Cherry’s advice? Drink lots. (Fan590)

MEANWHILE BACK IN THE REAL WORLD African people like albinos … for the strangest and deadliest of reasons. At least 10,000 are in hiding, fearing for their lives. (msnbc)

BUT JACK BAUER DECLINED COMMENT Kiefer Sutherland endorses Medicare. (Larry Hubich)

PROBLEM IS, THE WHALES ARE STILL GETTING SHOT AT George Monbiot says Canada is to the environment what Japan is to whales. (The Guardian)

LINDA DOESN’T LOVE A MAN IN UNIFORM … FOR A REASON Shorter Linda McQuaig: Rick Hillier is a bully: Richard Colvin stand up to bullies. (Toronto Star)

Pick of the Day: World AIDS Day

Conceived by two public information officers (James Bunn and Thomas Netter) working for the World Health Organization in Geneva, World AIDS Day has been held annually since 1988 to promote awareness of the pandemic and to honour those who have died from HIV/AIDS.

That's a lot of people to commemorate, unfortunately. Since 1981, an estimated 25 million people world-wide have died from the disease. Another 34 million currently live with HIV. In the past decade in particular, Africa has been hardest hit. But earlier this year, Saskatchewan's chief medical officer Moira McKinnon made headlines with the announcement that there had been a 40-per-cent jump in new cases of HIV in the province to 174 compared to 2007.

From the outset in the Western world, HIV/AIDS has been stigmatized unlike virtually any other communicable disease; first because of its association with gay men, and now because of its impact on sex trade workers and intravenous drug users. For proof of the extent to which "morality" has intruded on what is essentially a public health issue, one need look no further than the recent decision of the Saskatchewan government to limit the number of needles distributed at needle exchanges to ten per visit -- a move which HIV advocacy groups have condemned.

It has become a tradition on Dec. 1 for arts organizations and artists to withdraw from view for a day an art work as a way of observing World AIDS Day. In honour of that tradition, there is no pick-of-the-day today. Although if you're in the Cornwall Centre today between 10 a.m.-3 p.m. AIDS Programs South Saskatchewan and All Nations Hope will be distributing informational pamphlets. As well, at 7 p.m. there will be a memorial gathering for people lost to AIDS at the Ramada Hotel.