Friday, June 29, 2007

A great list

First off, apologies for not blogging yesterday!

Rick mentioned Bill Casey this morning on the Hotline. Bill has been mentioned as the top performer in the Commons this session! The list is great, especially the biggest underachievers. Gordon O' Connor is at the top of the list! It's very interesting to read:

Can't wait for this widely rumoured cabinet shuffle? Can you imagine Stockwell Day as Defense Minister? Rick can just stop preparing for the show, that move alone would carry us through as a topic to discuss. Can you imagine his P.R. stunts for that? Would he come to his first news conference dressed in camo with his face painted? Please, Prime Minister Harper, for the love of the Hotline, make it happen!

So...would you vote for Cecil Wright for Mayor? That was one caller's suggestion during the sports hour. He says he wouldn't run for mayor, but he didn't rule out a run at council. Wouldn't that be fantastic? I think he would do a great job and bring some badly needed common sense to the joint. Did you hear Rick's interview with Harry McInroy today? The Cole Harbour councillor was talking about the closure (finally) of the Halifax 2014 Commonwealth Games office. Then he tells Rick, Halifax could be on the hook for any debt during next year's World Hockey Championships being held in conjunction with Quebec City. Huh? More on this on Tuesday, I'm sure.

Cecil and Joan had a slightly more civil conversation today about their favourite teams, the Red Sox and the Blue Jays, respectively. Joan called her Jays, "young and spicy", and referred to the Sox as "old and tired". I love when Joan calls, she's a spitfire. Although, we were all disturbed when she said she was in love with Ben from PEI during the 9:30-10 hour on Wednesday.

Rick spoke to Jim Connors about the drug Avastin and apparently, a decision on whether the province will fund the drug will come next week. Bill Casey is definitely the frontrunner for Hotline Nova Scotian of the Year, but I think Jim Connors should be in the running too. He is battling cancer himself and is fighting to have the province fund this drug that could extend the lives of people living with colorectal cancer. Good luck Jim! The Hotline is behind you 100 % on this one.

Banning cell phones in cars - it's a no-brainer as far as I'm concerned and I don't know why a provincial politician hasn't suggested this legislation and scored some really easy political points. I think we've all had near death experiences with someone in a car on a cell.

All right...time to go, so remember, we're off Monday and back on Tuesday with the summer edition of the Hotline. We're on from 9-11 and Rick is there next week. After that AJ takes over. sure to tune in for Rick's last week, okay?

Talk to you then!

Happy Canada Day!!



P.S. Here are the words for O Canada. Might want to brush up before Sunday!


O Canada!
Our home and native land!
True patriot love in all thy hearts command.
With glowing hearts we see thee rise, The True North strong and free!
From far and wide, O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
God keep our land glorious and free!
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.
O Canada, we stand on guard for thee.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007


We talked a lot about toast today, but not in the breakfast way. Rick alluded to several politicians being "toast" in the next election campaign. David Hendsbee was enemy #1 on the Hotline today. The whole O'Connell Drive issue is outrageous! We had Lisa Sanford, one of the residents on the show. I expected her to sound much angrier, but she told Rick she and her neighbours were extremely p.o'd, and now they just want some action. Lisa says they're not expecting anything back until the end of the summer. Can you imagine just coming home from work and getting a bill for 65-hundred dollars? Well, some of us NS Power customers can. I kid, I kid. One good thing has come from this: Lisa says her neighbours all know each other and are friends, so that's nice. We'll keep you posted.'s some scoop from the retail Canada Day debacle. I heard through my super secret squirrel Mic Mac Mall source that some stores might not even be opening. Apparently, some of the employees are using their right not to work Sundays, this Sunday. So, even if you go to the mall, it might be a ghost town.

Ali was kind of funny today. He is convinced Mayor Kelly will not be re-elected and he had a suggestion for his next project. Ali says the PK should write a book called "How I destroyed Halifax", by Peter Kelly. Now - full disclosure, Ali has a total beef with the Mayor and Len Goucher about this development in Bedford, so I don't think he can be trusted as the voice of the electorate leading up to next year's election. Catchy title though.

I so enjoyed listening to Bill Casey speak with Rick this morning. What a classy guy, as caller Andrew mentioned. He refuses to hit below the belt, he is the complete opposite of vindictive. Seriously, the man radiates goodness. It was great to shake his hand today and say Thank You in person. As Rick mentioned, he is totally the frontrunner for Hotline Nova Scotian of the Year.

We had some pretty memorable quotes today on the show, but Theresa, who was the first caller was really blunt today when talking about irresponsible dog owners. Quote: "If you don't pick up poop, you're a scumbag". Okay then!

Anyway, has anyone ever wondered why we even have councillors if staff is doing all the work and has the bottom line on all decisions?

Peter Duffy is on with Rick during hour number two tomorrow, so that's always interesting. Let's see if he's had any crazy nighttime encounters lately.


Thanks so much for listening!


Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Spandexed full moon

Earlier in the show, Brian asked Rick and I if there was a full moon. We said, I don't think so, but it's something I may have to google after having the city councillors in studio. We had Dawn Sloane and Patrick Murphy in. Dawn came in wearing a white, plastic cowboy hat. Pat was running a little late, so I made my bathroom run during the news and came back and Pat was talking to Rick wearing an orange fleece and spandex pants!! Not going to lie, I shrieked and told Dawn. Then it became a gag throughout the show! To be fair, I think Pat rode his bike to the show, so good for him! Rick was really fired up during the interview too! He took them to task several times, as did several of the callers. Having the councillors in is such an easy way to generate phone calls - everyone wants to take a shot.

I'm so aggravated about these Sunday openings in Metro. I have no issue with Sunday shopping, but it's freakin' CANADA DAY. I mean, they're closed on Xmas and not all of us are Christian, but we're all Canadian! A huge tip of the Hotline baseball cap to Carlo Weickert, who tried to keep the stores closed and to Canadian Tire who will be closed on this upcoming holiday. Thank you. Let's hope the government heeds the NDP's wishes and clarifies this statutory holiday situation, as it's clarified in every othe province with a little common sense.

Well dear listener, sweet dreams tonight thinking about those spandex pants! LOL.

As you know it's generally an open show on Wednesdays, but Bill Casey will be in during the second hour! He'll be talking about the Atlantic Accord discord and his journey over the past few weeks. Apparently, he's just back from Jordan too. That's between 11-12 tomorrow.

Enjoy this heat!



Monday, June 25, 2007

O Canada

Just in time for Canada Day, Bruce brought up the highly contentious issue of the national anthem. I'm being facetious, of course, I don't consider the anthem contentious, but Bruce sure did!! I'm still not quite sure what the fuss was about and now I have O Canada stuck in my head. Thanks Bruce!

Rick heard through the grapevine that they may start charging 5 cents a bag at one of the major grocery chains. They do that at some of the No Frills and Food Basics stores in Ontario and they do it in Germany as well. Everyone in Germany uses cloth bags for everything! You have to specifically ask for a bag if you buy something. I'm glad to see they are jumping on this in Canada now - just think about all that plastic wasted. It was shocking to hear the stats I found about a Tim Horton's drive-thru in Edmonton. Apparently, Owen Sound, Ontario is dealing with the issue of drive thrus too. Some people have stepped forward and opposed a new Tims opening up that has a drive thru. They cited research compiled from someone studying 1 Tims in Edmonton. That person said cars idle an average of 5000 hours a day in drive thrus - creating 23.5 tonnes of greenhouse gases. Here's the article:

During the first hour, caller Sandy (whose son is in Afghanistan) told us a story about being jeered on a highway in Quebec over the weekend. They thought it was because they had a "Support our troops" sticker on the car...but eventually we figured out that it was because they have a Canadian flag on their car and it was St. Jean Baptiste day - the fete National in Quebec! It's still pretty ridiculous that someone would give you the finger for flying your own flag in your own country.

I had this weird call off the air today. The caller wanted me to pass on to Dave Rodenhiser and Rick this question: "Do they think Bill Black as leader of the Conservative party would have handled and negotiated the Atlantic Accord better than Rodney MacDonald?" I was almost tempted to ask if it was Bill Black on the phone!!! Are the knives out for Rodney? Was this caller just testing the waters for Mr. Black? Politics in this province might be exasperating, but that also makes it so damn interesting!!

Don't forget if you're trying to get on this Vitamin D bandwagon to talk to your doctor or pharmacist first! Thanks to Mrs. Simone, my grade 10 Family Studies teacher, I learned Vitamins A, D, E and K are fat soluble, meaning they are stored in your body fat and you could poison yourself. Things like Vitamin C are water soluble, meaning they pass through your body. Was there ever family studies out here? In high school in Upper Canada we took swimming in gym class (something Moosehead Mike recommended) and we also had art, family studies (cooking) and shop (woodworking, etc.) Since I recently learned a lot of N.S. schools don't have textbooks, I would be suprised if students learned how to sew.

It's great to walk outside and actually have it feel like summer, eh? Keep it coming!!



Friday, June 22, 2007

Very exciting....

Rick filled me on a couple guests he's working on for next week. I can guarantee you if they work out, CJCH will be making some headlines. Trust me.

Andrew had a good idea for show I'm sure Rick will be working on for next season - Scott Taylor versus John Boileau. The debate format has always worked well on the show and I would really love to hear that debate about Afghanistan. In light of the latest fatalities, the military has banned the use of those un-armoured vehicles outside of military areas.

G-mac, aka Gloria McCluskey, was her ususal fired-up self today. She basically issued a challenge to Hotline listeners and to actual politicians - put your money where your mouth is! She criticized Darrell Dexter's appearance on the Hotline yesterday, talking about his plans, but not getting into detail about the actual implementation. She urged those who call the Hotline to, instead of complaining and acting like they know everything, to put their names forward for next year's election. We'll see if any of them do! We know Bruce Devenne and Jim Hoskins have expressed interest in the past.

Did you see the plans for the new Farmer's market? It looks fantastic and the fact it's a green building is great too. Rick interviewed Fred Kilcup about the new market today. The market is so crowded now that you have to get there at like 7am in order to walk around freely to find your stuff. A seven-day a week Farmer's market? Yes please! I can imagine Pete Luckett might not be too happy about it though.

I get a lot of calls off the air from people looking for Rick's e-mail. If you want to e-mail the Hotline, send your e-mails to:

I really enjoyed the sports hour today. I was expecting some sexist comments from the boys about the tryouts for the "Weather girls", the cheerleaders for the Halifax Rainmen, but was pleasantly suprised by the lack thereof. Maybe AJ took my watergun threat seriously!!! Anyway...I'm not really into hockey or basketball (2 sports that dominate the hour), so sometimes I just kind of tune it out. But the interviews with Coach K and Penny Laroque were great today. Penny is a spitfire who went toe to toe with the boys just fine and that's what I like to hear! I may need to borrow her boxing gloves sometime!

There's a severe thunderstorm watch in effect and there are showers for the weekend, so let's hope the weather changes. We deserve summer don't we???

Have a good one!


Thursday, June 21, 2007

Get your motor running.....head out on the highway!!!

Looking for adventure....and whatever comes our way!

I had that song in my head right as Rick was talking to Inch about getting back on the motorcycle again. I can totally picture Rick riding a motorcycle. Maybe that will be the Hotline poll of the day tomorrow - should Rick get a hog? I'm sure it will generate a lot of response.

So the Canadian government wants to add an amphibious assault ship like the U-S-S Wasp to its fleet? Rick says the cost of it would be 2-billion dollars! Maybe if we want trillions of dollars in debt like the U.S. we should totally look into it! Speaking of the U.S., get this figure: 3,545. That's the number of American soldiers killed in Iraq since the conflict began in March of 2003. A few months ago, that number eclipsed the number of victims killed in 9-11. How incredibly sad is that?

Still no sign of the boys in Lower Sackville. Crews continue to search and the family is there waiting for news. We heard from a family friend on the Hotline today, begging the boys to come forward if they are just afraid to go home. They're trying to keep their spirits up, but that must be so difficult. The waiting must be excrutiating.


Another hot topic on the show today was Premier Rodney MacDonald. He's mentioned on the show at least once a day, but the people weren't being kind today, that's for sure!! Quote from Bob: "He flip flops more than a pancake on a hot griddle!" Yikes!! Then there was Rick, fanning the flames of why the Premier won't come on the show with this zinger: "Bob, compared to Rodney, wouldn't anyone look good?" Oh dear. If he did come on the show, I would actually worry about what people would say because the daily comments I hear are obviously, not good.

Fun Hotline fact du jour: a bunch of ducks is called a "paddling" or a "team". A brace is two ducks. I also learned that elks are in a "gang" and emus travel in "mobs"! A caller tried to stump me off the air by asking me what crows travelled in and I promptly replied "murder". See, I told you. My regular trivia skills are pretty damn good, it's just my N.S. trivia level that is extremely below average!

D.D. was kind of fired up today, didn't you think? The polls suggest that if the election were held today, D.D. would be the new Premier. Would you vote for D.D.? Leave your comments or be sure to give us a call tomorrow. Sports during hour number one and then....the Friday free for all!!!

It's the first day of summer and so far, it's not feeling very summer-esque. Let's hope it changes soon!

Have a good one,


Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Way more than 9 lives....

First though, I can't believe I heard the word "goiter" on the air today. Is it a full moon?

The title of today's entry refers to one caller's description of the cat by-law today on the Hotline. Finally, after 18 tries, the by-law has incrementally moved forward. The process now moves forward to a public hearing which Mayor Kelly thinks will probably be in Sept. Will keep you posted!!

The cat by-law essentially WAS the show today. Everyone wanted to talk about the "kitties" and there were so many different opinions it is no wonder council had such a hard time with it. That being said, there is no excuse for some of the comments made yesterday. Seriously, I think the councillors got the meeting confused with an audition for "Last Comic Standing". You MUST read Rodenhiser today.

Here is the link. Take 5 minutes and read this. It is possibly the funniest thing I've read all year. Classic doesn't begin to describe this:

The comments under the article are great too - someone else mentioned Last Comic Standing!!!

For Councillor Hendsbee - a little snippet from

feral: existing in a natural state, as animals or plants; not domesticated or cultivated; wild.

virile: Of, relating to, or having the characteristics of an adult male, especially the ability to perform sexually as a male. Having or showing masculine spirit, strength, vigor, or power.


With all the levity that the cat by-law provided today, off the air we were dealing with some incredibly sad news about the 3 Canadian soldiers who died in Afghanistan. No names released yet, but if any are from Atlantic Canada, I will post the names here and be sure to tune into C100 news at 4 and 5 for the latest.

What is also so sad is the story about the 15 and 14 year old boys missing at First Lake. I think everyone's hoping that they're all right, but the search of the lake continues. Our thoughts are definitely with the families of the boys and we pray that they are somehow found, safe and sound.


More tomorrow....including an hour with Darrell Dexter.

Take care,


Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Nova Scotia trivia is not my forte...obviously

Canadian Trivia - I think I'm a pretty decent lifeline....but Nova Scotia trivia? I suck. Normally I can at least hazard a guess, but today, the N.S. questions were impossible. Apparently, I'm the only person in the province that doesn't know Howard Dill grows massive pumpkins in Windsor. I redeemed myself by answering the Stanley Park question correctly, but Tom had the best line ever: "I hope she knows more about parks than she knows about pumpkins!" Rick nearly fell out of his chair laughing at that one! Caller Reg near the end of the show called and said to me "Pop quiz: what colour is a pumpkin?" Ha ha...I fear this pumpkin debacle will go down in history like when Austin answered "Jacques Cousteau" one time when he was a lifeline.

So, again, the lines were flooded with another random and hard-hitting Hotline topic: How to keep cats out of your garden.

Here are some of the suggestions - good luck!

-orange rinds
-mothballs (even though one caller said his daughter tried this and it didn't work)
-cayenne pepper (also good for sore throats!!!)

So council is meeting for 12 hours today? Even if you hate politicians, that's an awfully long time to be dealing with city business!! Especially this cat by-law. Off the air, at least 4 people told me it was a waste of time. Rick is trying to touch base with the guy from Calgary we had in the studio a month and a half ago to talk about that city's very successful program. It's our poll question scroll down a bit on the right and vote!

Constable Carr didn't seem to get a kick out of Rick's mockery of the "Public Safety Unit". That's the name of the "riot squad". The Public Safety Unit sounds so Orwellian, don't you think?

Anyway....a little bit of sunshine out there today - it's a start!! I can't believe it's only 2 weeks until the start of July. It feels like Rick just went on holiday and now he's almost (small tear) gone again. He deserves it though, he truly does.

Enough sucking up for me!

More tomorrow,


P.S. All open show tomorrow - so be sure to give us a call!

Monday, June 18, 2007

Holier than thou "Hippie-crites"

Dave Rodenhiser coined that when we were all talking during a break during hour number two on the show today. Rick's interview with one of the anti-Atlantica protesters sure sparked a number of calls. To me, he just sounded really hypocritical. It's like these people protest everything, but still want to be caught by the social safety net if they're threatened, get sick etc.
Dave called them "morons" today. Personally, I'm still in shock that I agreed with a Charles Moore column. Do you agree that it was cowardly to wear masks and protest and not give their names to police? I sure do. I've mentioned before - quiet diplomacy. You can get really far in life by using your brain. Throwing shards of glass at police isn't what I'm talking about. Go to university, become an economist, lawyer, whatever and change the system. You won't change the system by assaulting police. In fact, with a record, you're pretty much guaranteeing that you'll never be able to get a real job. Where does that leave you? Sucking off the public teat. That is what I call hypocrisy.

I was downtown on Saturday morning and there was a security guard in front of the TD bank. The TD was the hardest hit during the protest. Apparently it took 7 hours to get the paint scrubbed off in front of the building. Nice quote in the paper eh? "Paint balloons versus 9mm Glocks". Like Tim said, no shots were fired by police! I swear, this people are so busy being holier than thou, it's a wonder they find time for work. Exactly.

Onto someone working (smartly) with the system - Joyce Carter. What a lady! I want to nominate her for Hotline Nova Scotian of the year. She's 80 years old and working for other veterans' widows to get fair treatment. She confronted the Prime Minister last week and had him on the ropes! Go get 'em Joyce! She says she's giving the P.M. another month to live up to his election promise and then she's travelling back to Ottawa for another round. Pretty sad state of affairs eh?


On a completely different and sad note, if you didn't hear, one of our Hotline regulars has died. Reg Knight died Saturday at the Q-E-2.

Here is the link to his obituary.

Whenever I picked up the phone and said "Hello, Hotline!" he always said "Reg Knight here" and he was always so friendly, even when he was totally ticked about something. He mostly spoke about roads and about the offshore. We are so sad about this and obviously, our condolences go out to the family. We never met Reg, but when you speak to someone so often, you definitely feel as though you know them. We'll miss you Reg.

Take care,


Friday, June 15, 2007

Does anyone dare?

Rick asked that question during the second hour of the show. Does anyone dare to call and defend the Premier, Peter Mackay or Gerald Keddy? Either no one wanted to accept the dare, or no one could think of anything to say because it was another pro-Bill Casey and Danny Williams Friday free for all!

Dalton McWimpy. I love it! Dalton wasn't Premier when I lived in Ontario. I suffered under the Mike Harris regime. Now he was a scary dude. He made Stephen Harper look like Mr. Rogers. In his cabinet: Jim Flaherty, John Baird, Tony Clement. I understand perfectly why they fit in so well in the Harper Cabinet. Dalton is a bit of a tool though. Nice guy, but there's a woman from Windsor named Sandra Pupatello, who is currently a cabinet minister. I've always thought she would be an incredibly dynamic Liberal leader. I mentioned to Rick, what Dalton is saying is just posturing. There's an election coming up in October in Ontario and from all indications, he's going to have a strong challenge from the Tory leader, whose name is, John Tory. With that name I guess it was pre-destined that he wasn't going to be a New Democrat.
In some ways I guess N.S. is better off. In Ontario, each person has to pay a health tax. Seriously! If you don't pay, they take it right off your income tax refund. So, not only are you already paying taxes, you have to pay a health tax too! My brother and his wife have one kid and they pay at least a few hundred dollars a year. So that's one thing we don't have here.
Anyway, Dalton is grasping at straws. The auto manufacturing sector in Ontario is in the dumps and he's trying to score political points by taking some cheap shots at Atlantic Canada. Bottom line.

For all those people who want to pick up "The deal is the deal" buttons, you can pick them up at the Liberal caucus office. It's in the Bank of Montreal building on George St. in downtown Halifax. It's Suite 1402 and you can get them from 9-5. I think the campaign is kind of ill-conceived. It's not the people of Nova Scotia you have to convince to be behind the Atlantic Accord. The Liberals are kind of preaching to the converted, don't you think?

I think it's the first time in forever no one has called to mention Rick's appearance on the CBC. I missed it last night - was he a star?

Didn't you love the front of the Daily News today? The Prime Minister giving Sid the kid one of his trophies and the line "So much for the culture of defeat, Mr. Harper". Ha!! That's one good thing that's come out of this Atlantic Accord mess. I feel Nova Scotians are sticking together and are finally uniting for one cause. It's palpable. That's what makes what Mackay and Keddy did so much more galling.

Well, I had a huge sigh of relief at the end of the show, because it's been so busy and contentious!! It's hard not to get emotionally involved in the issues when you hear about them, read about them, write about them and ponder them every single day. That being said, I'm going to let the Atlantic Accord go and relax this weekend. I hope you do the same!

Thanks for another great week...more Monday (with - The Rodenhiser)!

Take care,


Thursday, June 14, 2007

A record, I think

I think Guinness should be alerted to the number of topics covered during today's show. There were at least a million different things brought up during the Mayor's hour alone. Thank you for all the calls and it was nice to switch it up a bit, after all, we've been discussing the Atlantic Accord ad nauseum for a couple of weeks.

Speaking of, did you hear the Gerald Keddy interview? During it, I wrote a note to Rick saying he doesn't sound like he knows if he's coming or going! It was a PR disaster from my view and from the view of other listeners. The phones lit up with people asking me, "What is he talking about?" He contradicted himself at least 3 times and it was painful to listen to. I also wrote to Rick that if Keddy wasn't sure of the numbers, why did he support the budget? Before the second reading, Bill Casey said he had been consulting with people, including the legislative lawyer. I guess that's the difference between the two. Be sure to call us with your Keddy comments or leave a comment on the blog!

Great interview today with a woman named Denyse Hockley. She started a petition calling on the government to fund a drug called Avastin. Her kids go to school with Judy Young's son. She's a mom who has colorectal cancer and it's believed Avastin could help her live an extra 2-3 years. Jim Connors, a Hotline regular, is pushing for the government to fund the drug, even though he pays for it on his own. Anyway, as promised, here is the link to the petition.

Good luck Denyse!!! I hope the government listens.

As mentioned, Mayor Kelly was in for an hour and had about a gazillion different issues thrown at him and he did handle it with his usual aplomb. I always run to the bathroom during the 11 o' clock news and the mayor was just coming in. I go to shake his hand, which is something I will avoid in the future. To say Mayor Kelly has a firm handshake would be the greatest understandment I've ever made in the blog. You might have heard my yelp of pain during the news. Ow. My hand was crushed. I think if the Mayor loses the next election he could easily be part of these cage matches at the Forum. Dude is strong. I still feel some residual pain. The Mayor is one of the kindest people I know, but now it's clear - I wouldn't want to meet him in a dark alley. Seriously though, it was a mixed bag of questions ranging from commuter rail, road name changes (which is seriously dumb: "Boston Street Superstore"), graffiti, snow removal contractor damage, the fast ferry, street lights, the dog by-law and changes at the water commission. See? I told you it was a gazillion. I was happy because I mentioned that a certain major mall in Metro that doesn't recycle and he promised city staffers were going to look into it. There's just no excuse for that!

You heard it on the Hotline first - Jerry Blumenthal says he's running again in District 11, his old stomping grounds and the seat now held by Pat Murphy. Jerry was firing on all cylinders today slamming everyone left, right and centre. It was very entertaining.

It's great on the Hotline when you learn little known facts about Rick. Turns out he is deathly afraid of...wait for it.....BUMBLEBEES. Man, I can't wait for April fool's day!!! As Ben said at the end of his call today....BZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ.

If it doesn't get sunny by this weekend, I'm moving back to Ontario. Sports tomorrow during hour number one and then...the Friday free for all!



Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Get it together!

As Rick would say, the federal Conservatives don't know if they're coming or going! Here's the latest now:

Federal Finance Minister Jim Flaherty is discussing an insurance policy with Nova Scotia to ensure the province does not lose revenue once it decides how it will deal with Ottawa's new budget and altered equalization formula.Flaherty had said there would be no side deals for any province as Ottawa tries to settle a dispute with Nova Scotia and Newfoundland over offshore energy revenues.But the minister now says his officials are working on a way to ensure Nova Scotia ``will be no worse off'' once the province decides whether to stick with the existing offshore agreement known as the Atlantic Accord or opt into a new, richer equalization deal.

Why would there have to be an insurance policy? Harper says the Accord is completely intact and the we should sue him over it. What the hell?

Dance, puppet, dance

Don't you get the impression the PM and the Finance Minister had a great chuckle at the Premier's expense after they snowed him into believing he had somehow re-started negotiations the Flaherty said were never going on in the first place?

It's sad.

We had the most popular MP in the world, Bill Casey, on the show today. He gave us his take on the budget vote yesterday. Casey wrote an open letter to his constituents on his website. Here is the link:

Over a thousand e-mails and calls!

For those of you who wanted Peter Mackay and Gerald Keddy's phone numbers, here they are.

Peter Mackay: 613-992-6022
Gerald Keddy: 613-996-0877

You know what I'd love to hear on the Hotline tomorrow? I'd love to hear someone who calls up to defend Peter Mackay. I haven't heard that on the Hotline EVER. Rick mentioned that photo op with the "loyal dog" when Belinda dumped him. Turns out, that was the neighbour's dog, it wasn't even his! One caller told us today that they probably had to tie a pork chop around the MP's neck just to get the dog to have anything to do with him. Ouch.

I forget which caller mentioned there's a Facebook group dedicated to ousting Peter Mackay. Hmmmm...this could be the impetus I've been waiting for to join!! Hey, those groups seem to work. That guy got that Bruce Frisko tattoo on his arm after 25-thousand people joined! Facebook is the 21st century equivalent of a 1960s sit-in.

Did you see in Calgary that Ralph Klein's seat went to a Liberal in a by-election! That is craziness! The seat had been Conservative since 1971.

Scott Taylor is so fascinating to listen to, don't you think? It's so depressing, but you really feel like you're getting the straight goods from him when he speaks. He was just in Afghanistan 2 weeks ago, not staying on any bases, but travelling, armed, in the country. You can check out Scott's magazine, Esprit de Corps, here:

On a completely different note, I wrote Sean Wood an e-mail today. He's the wine/beer/spirits columnist from the Chronicle-Herald. He wrote this line that I took umbrage with. Rick thought I was overreacting, but he always thinks that. Here's the line in regards to a new beer at the NSLC:

"With lighter alcohol and smaller bottles, the style should appeal to women who prefer smaller quantities".

I took offense to the fact that he singled out women. It's like when Rick talks about bad women drivers. Why even mention women? You are either a bad driver or a good driver, why should sex be brought into it? I don't call Rick a great male talk show host, he's just a great host. Peter Mackay isn't a bad male M-P, he's just a bad M-P. Are you with me? He should have written, "this style should appeal to people who prefer smaller quantities". Am I overreacting here?

My brother once told me I'm not satisfied until I can be outraged over something. If true, thank God I work on the Hotline - it fills my quota every day.

Have a wonderful day!

Your favourite female Hotline producer, (see how ridiculous that sounds???)


Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Rodney come lately

Do the right thing.

6:15 tonight.

I hope the vote will be on CPAC or something. That's when we will see if any Nova Scotia or Newfoundland and Labrador MPs will be voting against the budget implementation bill. We know Bill Casey will be voting against it, but I can hardly wait to see what Gerald Keddy and especially, Peter Mackay will do. It promises to make for another contentious Hotline tomorrow. We know what they should do, don't we?

Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Danny Williams called us this morning to start the show. As Rick mused, how is Danny Williams cool with our show, and yet, we can't get our Premier to talk about the single biggest issue this year? Believe me, we tried. Joe Gillis, to his credit, called me back to say "Not today". He said he would try for later in the week. We know he is not the person standing in the way of the Premier coming on the show and to that person I say: "GET OVER IT".

So, I've just confirmed it - Paul McDaniel is leaving as the head of Metro Transit. He was a great guy! Apparently, he wants to be closer to his family in B-C, which is totally understandable. He was always great to have on the Hotline because he wanted to hear the negative comments. He thought by hearing them, he could make changes. It was so refreshing! So all the best to Paul and hopefully we can get him on the show one last time before he heads out west. Big thanks to Tim for calling us and giving us the tip on that one.

Be sure to check out QP today if you have a chance. Starts at 3pm with some opening insights from Don Newman. They only show 1/2 of QP on Newsworld, then you can flip over to CPAC for the rest of it. Should be especially fiery today, especially with all the Premiers accusing the PM of tearing apart the federation. The gall though, the arrogance....Harper telling us to sue the government for breaking the Atlantic Accord. David Grey of Newsworld says they will be carrying the budget vote live. I might do some live blogging then too. To the Conservative MPs of NS, I, and all the Hotline listeners implore you: DO THE RIGHT THING!

Thank God this story finally went national. Thank God for Bill Casey.

More tomorrow....of course!



Monday, June 11, 2007

It took you long enough!

That was the concensus on the Hotline today in regards to Rodney MacDonald's about face on the Atlantic Accord. Well, he's always been behind the accord, but now he's taking a Danny Williams type stance on the thing, urging N.S. Conservative members of Parliament to vote against the budget tomorrow night. The other mood on the Hotline after hearing this weekend's new is "pigs can fly". Ha! The third and final reading of the budget is slated for tomorrow night, according to Dartmouth-Cole Harbour MP Mike Savage, so we'll see what happens!! Peter Stoffer was really fired up today too! I really think people, especially MPs, are so comfortable with Rick that they really let loose! Sometimes Rick and I just stare at each other with our mouths agape wondering "Did we really just hear that?" It's a testament to Rick's interview skill though, to make interviewees and the listeners feel so comfortable. A lot of people he talks to tell me off the air that's what they like best about the show - how easy it is to do because Rick is so conversational.

Some listeners were wondering (and rightly so) if Rodney's stance seems a little disingenuous, especially after polling numbers were released last week. Better late than never though, right? When Rick spoke to Bill Casey, he asked point blank "Are they lying to us?" Bill responded about 5 times, "I just don't understand." Now...the plot thickens. The Prime Minister says his government is respecting the A.A. and says he'll be willing to go to court to prove it!! Wow. What will Gerald Keddy do tomorrow? I can hardly wait!!!

We had Halifax's superhero in today during hour number 2 - that is, of course, David Rodenhiser!! Seems like his fan base is growing exponentially eh? Being a regular on the Hotline will do that for ya! David told us that he was walking down Robie Street and someone yelled out of a truck: "Are you the Rodenhiser?" Turns out it was longtime listener Donna and they met and bonded. She loves the Rodenhiser theme song, joining the throngs of people who love hearing our producer Terry Purcell wail "Rodenhiser!!!!!" at the end of it. When David entered the studio I accosted him and accused him of being the brains behind ANOTHER postcard campaign in relation to the Summer Hotline. I've been getting more postcards...not from Ben, but from someone in Halifax! They want Rodenhiser this summer too and are saying "Go Ben Go!" I made David submit to a handwriting sample, and I deduced he isn't behind it. I have my suspicions about who is behind it, so I'll keep you posted! Never a dull moment behind the scenes of the Hotline.

Did you hear the Rodenhiser's mom call the show today? That was really sweet. The whole hour was pretty much "David Rodenhiser: This is your life".

So Paris Hilton says she's not going to act dumb anymore. Isn't that going to be hard?

Well looks like more rain this afternoon....but hopefully some sunny skies and warm temperatures later this week! Enjoy your Monday and we'll talk to you tomorrow. I'm expecting another crazy busy day!



Friday, June 8, 2007


I've known Rick for almost 7 years. I've had many conversations with him and have, obviously, heard him talk - a lot! But today, for the first time, I heard him use the word "awesome". I overuse it (just read the blog and see), but it was so funny to me to hear Rick use "awesome". He used it in the context of what Bill Casey did this week and from what we heard on the show this week you are in agreement - what he did was AWESOME.

Only caller Burt today has a slight qualm with what Casey did, arguing that it didn't really make much of a difference. What did you think of Scott Armstrong, Casey's riding association President talking about Bill returning to caucus once this Atlantic Accord issue is sorted? Once bitten, twice shy I would think, but politics is a very strange beast, so you never know what could happen.

That was an interesting article in the paper about Elizabeth May threatening to quit the Greens. As she described it, it came during her "week from hell", where she was taking to task about making comments about Nazis. Plus, she's dealing with chronic pain. She's on the wait list for a hip replacement. I'm glad she didn't quit because I (probably too optimistically) think she has a chance to beat Peter Mackay. The callers didn't hide their vitriol today when speaking about him. He was called a "nitwit", the "Minister of Affairs" and a "liar". Ouch. I just found out someone I used to go to university with works with Peter Mackay!! So I'm going to e-mail him and get the skinny. I'll keep you posted!!! I think one caller said it best: Bill Casey, not Peter Mackay, is Nova Scotia's man in Ottawa.

Another caller suggested starting some sort of Atlantic Party. As Rick pointed out we have 32 seats and that could be the only way to force some sort of concern for the region. Rick thinks Gerald Keddy has no chance in hell of being re-elected in the current political climate. The only way to save face for the Tories, I think, is to simply respect the Atlantic Accord. That will haunt them. I can't wait for the election! I can't wait for candidates to come to my door so I can grill them, it's going to be so great. Is anyone else annoyed about the current trend of backtracking on deals? The G-8 announced they signed a deal on climate change. Uh....sorry...I thought we did that and it was called "Kyoto". Now, the Conservatives promising us a deal on the offshore. WE ALREADY HAVE A DEAL - IT'S CALLED THE ATLANTIC ACCORD! No wonder no real issues are ever tackled when politicians keep negotiating things that are already signed and sealed...they just don't DELIVER.

One of the callers called about the streaming audio on not working. Here are 2 options. When it says the streaming is down for maintenance, click "OK" and it should open. If not, instead of clicking on the button to listen live, right click on it with the mouse and go to "Open link in new window". That should do it! But the engineering department has indicated that it does indeed work.

Man, AJ took some good-natured ribbing today during the sports hour. AJ's love of free food is well-known, but can you blame him? Whenever there's a plate of food in our lunchroom downstairs, you have to really motor down there or else you're going to find crumbs. It's a well-known trait found in most broadcasters!!! AJ hitting the BBQ scene totally cracked up everyone today, especially Marcel Patenaude! It was quite entertaining. I've never heard Marcel laugh before, so that was truly hilarious. I wish I could post audio here! I've got to figure that out. AJ said something extremely rude during the commercial break and I won't repeat it, but I'm thinking about getting a water gun for the Summer Hotline. Whenever he says something dumb I'll just fire away.

Anyone else excited about the French Open finals this weekend? It looks like it will be a Federer-Nadal rematch on Sunday! I volunteered to be the Hotline's tennis correspondent and talk tennis during the sports hour, but Rick says all the time: "Tennis is not a sport". He's wrong because tennis is the best sport of all time...sorry boss!

Rodenhiser is in on Monday, so that will be fun...and we get to hear his theme which we all enjoy!

Have a fantastic weekend!!

Take care,


Thursday, June 7, 2007

Not in accord

I loved what David Rodenhiser wrote at the end of his column today:

David Rodenhiser thinks Stephen Harper has a phobia of accords: the Atlantic Accord, the Kyoto Accord, the Kelowna Accord. The man must be petrified when passing a Honda dealership.

Hear, hear!

I thought our two political cartoonists went above and beyond today too.

De Adder:

MacKinnon's is great too, it so succinctly summed up what Casey did and the price he paid. Just click on and scroll down a bit to the left and you'll see an icon where you can view the cartoon. Great work BM!

Did you notice how more and more Hotline callers are using the term "Benedict Mackay"? I think Rick's little nickname is catching on! I thought Rick's interview with Murray Brewster, our old friend from Broadcast News, was interesting. Murray re-iterated what I wrote in the blog yesterday. People from Ontario, Quebec and east could care less about the Maritimes. I think you'd be hard pressed to find even 10 people on the street in Toronto who could tell you what the capital of New Brunswick is. Halifax is generally a little better known. Seriously - it's hard to comprehend when you live here, but issues in Atlantic Canada are of very little concern to anyone living outside of the region. Like I said yesterday, sad, but true.

Mea culpa time - I just got the new Coast and they did print a small correction about mixing up the Garys in the Council Report card. Too bad that's not all that was messed up.

Sergeant Mike Spearns paid us a little visit to talk about traffic etc. today. It was really interesting and you can tell he is passionate about his job. I love that - if you don't have passion, why bother?

2 traffic experts joined us during hour number 2 and here's some good news for Metro Transit users like myself - starting in September, the GO times will be in real time! That means when you call the GO time, it will tell you when the bus will actually be coming and not just when it theoretically will come. This is going to be a godsend, especially in the winter when you're praying the bus is on time when faced the prospect of freezing.

Harper re-visiting the issue of missile defence? Are you kidding me? Yeah, we so desperately need ANOTHER billion dollar boondoggle. Can't Harper look at Bush's approval rating? If I were him, I would look at that very low number (in the Rodney range) and do whatever is opposite of what comes out of Bush's mouth.

On a completely different topic - is anyone else sad that Bob Barker is retiring and taped his last show? Anyone?

It's hard to believe another week has almost come and gone. Sports during the first hour tomorrow and then, it's a free for all, as per usual.

Skies are starting to clear - should be a nice evening ahead!



Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Live blogging during question period!!

West Nova M-P Robert Thibault just called Peter Mackay a baffoon during Question Period!

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty stood up to answer the question and was laughing!!

Then Thibault asked him if he was going to resign as the "minister irrresponsible for Nova Scotia".

It's nice to see these backbench MPs getting a little time. Alexa got up to question Mackay too.

Now the Newfoundland Liberals are up and at 'em! Todd Russell's whipping out the Newfoundland rhetoric, it's awesome.

"We had problems with harp seals, now we have problems with trained seals". They had Loyola Hearn reply to that one, it was pretty weak.

All right..that's my live blogging during the QP!

The height of depravity

Seriously. The federal government has cut off Bill Casey's access to his own constituency files. If you lived in his riding and had an issue he was working on for you, he has no access to it right now. Apparently, a lawyer is involved, trying to restore that access to him. Can you imagine a government holding a strategy session how to ruin Bill Casey's life, because he is calling on his government to honour a signed deal that the Prime Minister promised to support?
I JUST WANT TO SCREAM. Casey is so classy though, sounded upset about the files, but regrouped and is looking at the big picture. Every call we've gotten has been positive, but even Bill can't believe the attention that he's getting for DOING THE RIGHT THING. Does it happen in Ottawa that infrequently?

It must be devestating to think that after working with people for years and years, suddenly one day to realize it was all fake. Your closest colleagues actually foster no allegiance to you whatsoever and then, you're alone. I told Rick today too, this wasn't a Garth Turner thing. Casey wasn't out for attention or to make a name for himself. As Peter Stoffer said, Casey is a good constituency man who simply wanted to do the right thing. For that, he loses everything.

Dave Rodenhiser was in today and he was a bit late because he was waiting to see what the Premier had to say after the cabinet meeting. Apparently, Rodney says if there is no deal Nova Scotians can expect "a different Rodney MacDonald". Rick spoke to John Hamm earlier today too, but Hamm, never one to scream, yell or speak ill of anyone, simply said he supported Rodney MacDonald. I agree with DR though - Jim Flaherty is from Ontario and as Dave said "he doesn't give a rat's arse about Nova Scotia". I agree 100%! Trust me, I'm from Ontario and they know nothing about Atlantic Canada and don't care to know. Sad, but true.

It will be interesting to see how this plays out. It makes me sick though, and scared to see how far the government will go to a) spin an issue to its own advantage and b) destroy anyone in the way.

Thanks for listening today,



Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Modern Hero?

Does it make you a hero to stand up and call on a government to go through with a signed and sealed deal? "Yes" was the concensus on the Hotline today, as Bill Casey was widely praised as a "hero" for saying he will be voting against his government tonight. It is quite rare to see anyone stand up to Harper, so he's definitely brave for doing that. Who was the last person to stand up to Harper - Stronach maybe? The vote goes at 6:45 our time and it will be interesting to see if anyone joins Casey in voting "NO".

Man, there were so many topics on the show today!!! This is going to be the longest blog ever!

Did you read the Coast's council review? I thought it was so far off base. Does this guy even go to Council? To mix up Gary Mead and Gary Martin, that speaks volumes to me. Gloria Mac - C? Sheila Fougere - B? I've lived in Fougere's district for over 5 years now...never heard a word from her. As Rick said, I have no idea what she's done for the district and I live there! She seems like a nice person, but that's all I know about her. The Coast is a very left leaning publication and I think that biased was well documented. If you love bikes and bike paths, well, you were going to get a good mark. It was interesting to read anyway.

Did you read the letter in the paper today from Kaitlyn Murray-Selinger's mother today in the Chronicle-Herald? Absolutely heartbreaking.

Act must be changed

My daughter, Kaitlyn Murray-Selinger, was struck by a truck on March 26 and subsequently passed away, on March 28.
The driver, Charles Wilson MacLeod, entered a guilty plea and has until June 8 to pay the paltry sum of $387.50 for failing to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk. End of story for him.
For the rest of my life, I have to live without my daughter and the happiness of having her. I will never see her graduate, get married, or see grandchildren. She was my only child and she was the love of my life. It was just her and I, and we were very close. To never have her walk through the door again is almost too much to bear.
The man who struck my daughter hasn’t even lost his licence.
If you maim or kill someone at a crosswalk, the fine is still the same ($387.50).
The government/politicians have to make changes to the Motor Vehicle Act.
Crosswalks should be re-painted white yearly, and red lights installed so drivers can see what is ahead. I know crosswalks don’t have walls around them, but pedestrians, if they are given the OK to cross and have made eye contact, should be able to cross safely.
They were going to spend millions on the Commonwealth Games. Why can’t HRM do something for the safety of our pedestrians? My daughter’s life should not be in vain. She was loved by so many. We have to make changes.
Sue K. Murray, Dartmouth

Good luck Sue and I know most of the Hotline listeners are behind you on this.


So the Rodney MacDonald government is slipping in the polls? Don Mills from Corporate Research spoke to Rick today about the latest poll. Did you hear when he got that little dig in to Rick about the Commonwealth games? Ha! It was interesting to hear that Danny Williams in NFLD has a personal popularity of 75%. From what I hear from people and read in the news, it's because apparently he's the same person he's always been. He drinks every Friday night at the same pub he's gone to for years etc. I don't see Rodney connecting with the people. He seems a little awkward and doesn't seem to be able to put everyday people at ease, as say, John Buchanan. Funny story - I didn't know a lot about NS politics before I moved here and I heard Rick mention all these horrible things JB did while he was Premier. I asked Rick how in God's name could anyone have voted for this terrible Premier? Then he came into the studio and literally, 30 seconds after meeting him, I'm eating out of his hand. Most charming man in the history of the universe. Hands down. Rick always groans when he remembers how weak I was to JB's charms.

For those interested in becoming a part of the Halifax Homeowners assocation - here's the number: 423-5791. There's no website, as far as I know. They're having a meeting on Monday. You can meet the other members and as Walter upsold it, "and you get a sandwich".

Rick was amused by the picture of German Chancellor Angela Merkel staring down Stephen Harper on the front page of the C-H today. It may look like she was giving him a mean look, but she really wasn't. Trust me, her face looks like that - always! Do you notice how she doesn't have laugh lines, but frown lines. The students in Germany did excellent impersonations of this notably dour individual. The students also got a kick of me saying Angela Merkel in my Canadian accent. In Germany it's pronounced "Angle-a Mairk-ell".

So, it's great to be back after a (too) short holiday. The time flew, but I had an absolute blast with my brother from Ontario!

David Rodenhiser will grace us with his presence tomorrow, so get ready to hear the (now famous) Rodenhiser intro!

Thanks for listening..and I'll talk to you tomorrow!