Mugabe = Crimes Against Humanity?

A story in today's National Post caught my eye and got me thinking. I can't find a link to the Post story, but here's The Telegraph's version.

Australia - a country that I have come to admire more and more in recent years - has asked the United Nations' Security Council to to refer "President" Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe to the ICC for prosecution for crimes against humanity. Apparently, such a step would be necessary because Zimbabwe does not "attorn" (ie, accept automatically) the jurisdiction of the ICC.

A part of me is in total agreement with this, leaving aside the fact that my respect for the UN as an institution has fallen significantly in recent years. Mugabe has not only tried to crush almost any civil liberty you could name, but his policies have turned a nation that had the potential to be an African leader into an economic and agricultural basket case.

Indeed, as the story in The Telegraph indicates, Mugabe's government has just brought in a whole new series of laws which will, amongst other things, bar access to the courts for farmers whose lands are "appropriated" by "war veterans" while increasing the punishment for those who dare criticise it.

Quite frankly, Zimbabwe would likely be much better off if Mugabe and his cronies were sent off, post haste.

However, I still have some hesitation in using the ICC to try Mugabe for "crimes against humanity". When I think of that term, images such as the Holocaust come to mind. A trial for crimes against humanity is just about as serious a step as can be taken against a national leader short of going to war against him or her. The question I have is, has Mugabe's behaviour - as reprehensible as it is - crossed the line?

I'm still wrestling with this one. Right now - as I type this - I would say, on balance, "yes it has", but it isn't an easy call to make, and a good argument against it may well be enough to persuade me otherwise.

Again - for the record - my hesitation is not a result of me trying to belittle what Mugabe and his government has done. I simply do not want the ICC, or the concept of trying and punishing those guilty of "crimes against humanity", to be diminished.

What do you think? The comments section is open.

More later.


Rock Rock Rock, Rock Till You Drop ...

Blame Damian Penny for this one.

At this site - scroll down a bit, and you should find it - you can track down the "Top 100 Hits" for a whole series of years. Damian decided to post the Top 100 for the year he graduated from High School, way back in '91.

So I figured in lieu of original thought or content, why not bore all my regular readers (both of you) with the Top 20 of the Top 100 - with some editorial commentary, just so I can completely rip off Damian's idea, instead of half-as*ing it - from even way-er back in 1990, the year I graduated from high school. Here we go:

1.. Hold On, Wilson Phillips - Utter dreck at #1 - that figures.
2. It Must Have Been Love, Roxette - Not getting much better ...
3. Nothing Compares 2 U, Sinead O'Connor - Ok, not that bad, despite my personal dislike of SO'C.
4. Poison, Bell Biv Devoe - ... the *hell* is *this* crap?
5. Vogue, Madonna - Prior to her faux-Brit accent
6. Vision Of Love, Mariah Carey - Nice to see she's progressed so much as an "artiste" in 15 years, eh?
7. Another Day In Paradise, Phil Collins - Whatever happened to this guy?
8. Hold On, En Vogue - Back to the suck ...
9. Cradle Of Love, Billy Idol - 'Cos it aint a "Top 100" list w/o Billy Idol ...
10. Blaze Of Glory, Jon Bon Jovi - Actually, this one is a guilty pleasure kind of song for me
11. Do Me!, Bell Biv Devoe - These losers again ....
12. How Am I Supposed To Live Without You, Michael Bolton - Ah, just what was needed to perk this list up: MICHAEL BOLTON! It can't get worse ...
13. Pump Up The Jam, Technotronic - ... oh wait, yes it could get worse.
14. Opposites Attract, Paula Abdul - But not like American Idol contestants attract, it appears ...
15. Escapade, Janet Jackson - Better days would be ahead for Janet, Justin notwithstanding. Heck, she's the *normal* "Jackson", though when you're competition is Michael and LaToya, well ...
16. All I Wanna Do Is Make Love To You, Heart - Again, whatever happened to this band?
17. Close To You, Maxi Priest - I can't remembr this tune for love or money. I doubt I'm missing much.
18. Black Velvet, Alannah Myles - Ah, there's some classic CanCon for you ...
19. Release Me, Wilson Phillips - Huh?
20. Don't Know Much, Linda Ronstadt and Aaron Neville - Wha?

... And I'm not going to bore you further with all of the other 80, but here's some (ahem) "highlights":

33. Unskinny Bop, Poison - The world needs more hair bands!
34. Step By Step, New Kids On The Block - Thank God, I thought NKOTB might be a little too "highbrow" for this list.
36. We Didn't Start The Fire, Billy Joel - Actually, this was a pretty neat video ...
41. Roam, B-52's - ... and this was a pretty neat tune.
46. Ice Ice Baby, Vanilla Ice - Speaks for itself.
56. U Can't Touch This, M.C. Hammer - STOP - Hammer Time!
65. Free Fallin', Tom Petty - Man, Tom Petty deserves to be in much better company ...
77. Just Like Jesse James, Cher - Cher recorded this between her 28th & 29th "Retirement Tours", if I recall correctly. Who'd have thought Sonny Bono (RIP) would be the *respected* one of that duo?
96. Without You, Motley Crue - You mean they finished *behind* Poison?
100. Tic-Tac-Toe, Kyper - How did this one *only* get to 100?

Anyway, sorry for the enforced trip down my memory lane, but it's actually quite funny how some of these "hits" - even the ones by one-hit-wonders - still remain lodged in the ol' cranium, 15 years after.

More later.

Drinking With Giants

Well, I was left to my own devices last Friday night, as my (much) better half was on-duty as a bridesmaid, hanging out at the home of the bride-to-be the night before her wedding.

So, what does a young man, full of p*ss and vinegar and temporarily on his own, do when he has a night to himself in Canada's biggest city, in the heart of the club district?

Go drinking with fellow right-wing and libertarian bloggers, that's what! Tres cool, non?

But all jokes aside, last Friday was a great time, and I spent it in the company of some very bright, friendly & interesting folks at the B. & B. Pub on Queen West. Unfortunately, I didn't catch the names of all those present, but we had some top-drawer opinionators there, including LIB's Bob, Nicholas of Quotulatiousness (thanks for the advice re: updating, btw, but as you can see, I still have a ways to go!), D. Brooks of B. Brooks, Greg Staples, Mike Brock, Ian Scott, and more.

Paul Tuns was there, and selling his book, Jean Chretien: A Legacy of Scandal (A su-poib book, although the title's a little bit too subtle, no?), and Yrs Truly got his own autographed copy of same. I also had had some very enjoyable conversations with Brenda Tipper of Tipperography and Kate of The Last Amazon. The only downside to the evening was the number of folks I didn't get to speak to.

What's more, Trinity-Spadina's own CPC candidate, Sam Goldstein (website on the way) was there, meeting and greeting (and recruiting!).

There are pictures of the gathering up here and here and here. Thankfully, my ugly mug seems to be absent from all / most of the pic's.

In short, a fun time was had by me, even if I did sometimes suffer from a serious case of blogger envy:

Well-Known Blogger Who Shall Remain Nameless: "Yeah, on a good day, I can get a thousand or so hits ... but sometimes when it gets slow, I only get a few hundred a day."

Jason Hickman, Thinking of His Measly 2.5K-ish hits: "Yeah, {nervous laugh}, I can see how that can get annoying - Barkeep, another Guiness please - NOW!"

... but hey, you can only learn from the best!

More later.


Oh, DEAR (non-political)

Yup, been gone for a while. Same old excuses that you're tired of hearing about, I'm sure!

But to make up for my absence, I've got something that's pretty darn funny, in a "dark / gallows humour" kind of way - and it's non-political, t'boot.

Check this out. It takes a few minutes, but trust me, the payoff is worth it at the end. I do feel bad for "Kim", however.

That'll teach him to mess around.

More later.