Archive for September, 2006

Still leaning towards Dion

Still leaning towards Dion

After doing research on the big 4 my impressions have changed. Bob Rae was a dipper in a centrist mold much like Saskatchewan’s Roy Romanow. Some argue that he was the victim of bad timing and he was forced to make hard decisions that led him to alienate his base. My impression of him improved but not enough to vote for him. The Liberals don’t need to move to the left.

Kennedy dipped in my eyes. After checking out his website and reading his policy it seemed high on generalities and weak on specifics. A politician who claims to understand the west should understand agriculture. He referred to the tired mantra of “fighting for fairness on the international stage” which I believe is a reference to pressuring other nations to reduce farm subsidies. It is a tired strategy that even if it were successful would not reduce world production. If a farmer gets less money for his or her grain they are still going to produce as much a possible.

My opinion of Michael Ignatieff improved significantly. He has some fantastic credentials. He is an excelent academic. That tells me two things. He is brilliant but I don’t want him running the country. He hasn’t really lead anything. Pure academics view the world through complicated lenses. This sometimes leads to conclusions about things are not tethered to something concrete. I think Ignatieff’s approach to Quebec would be disasterous. While I don’t mind his more aggresive stance on foreign policy in regards to Canada’s moral obliation to intervene in stituations like the Rwandan genocide, I think these can’t be applied with the same force to Iraq.

Dion speaks forcefully about an issue I care a great deal about: the environment. He has real federal experience. His english needs some help however Canadians elected Chretien so that certainly isn’t an insurmountable obstacle. He has demonstrated that he lives by principles and that is something the Liberals really need now. The Liberal party can no longer coast as the party of convenience. It has to become a party of conviction.

I’ll have to sleep on it but I think I’ll be voting for Stephane Dion.


Who to vote for, who to vote for?

Who to vote for, who to vote for?

Earlier this summer I was talked in to buying a Liberal membership by my friend Ryan Androsoff. He was working on the leadership campaign of someone who has dropped out of the race. So I have my membership and I can vote in the race for Stornoway. I’ll be doing a little research tonight. My options are.

Michael Ignatieff

Smart guy. Taught at Harvard. Supported the war in Iraq. Lived [outside Canada] for 30 years. He has some substance and can energize a crowd.

Bob Rae

Nice guy. Supported NDP candidates financially last election. Had a disasterous tenure as premier of Ontario. Not much hope I’m going to vote for him.

Stephane Dion

Smart guy. Toasted the separatists [post] 1995. A federal Liberal with lots of exerience. Very competent. He was the minister of the environment when that deparment has a poor track record. Not sure if that was his fault. So far he is probably my front runner.

Gerard Kennedy

Calgary Grit’s main man! Young, western, and unstained by federal Liberal politics. Great on paper. Heard less than stellar things about is personal performance. Going to investigate. Probably my number 2 choice.

Ken Dryden

Hockey guy. His automated machine called me. His message, vote for me because I can win the nation. Please…

Scott Brison

Tory guy. A little too quick with the blackberry perhaps.

Joe Volpe

Dead voter guy, child voter guy, expensive pizza guy. No hope, not a chance, quit now while you’re ahead.

Martha Hall Findlay

Unknown girl. Not much to say.

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Fault lines in the Emerging Church

Fault lines in the Emerging Church

In the last little while 3 distinct groups have been identified within the Emerging Church: The Relevants, Reconstructionists and the Revisionists.

The relevants are people I’ve called the Coffee and Candles set. Take regular church and tweak the style of worship and preaching to make it more “relevant” to new generation.

The reconstructionists are generally the organic church/house church crowd who want change the way church is structured or in some cases destructure it to the bare minimum.

The revisionists are those who are more theologically adventurous.

It wouldn’t take long to figure out I’m in the reconstructionist camp. To date I’ve generally got along with those that would be considered Revisionist. Among the relevants and reconstructionists there is more theological humility than in generic evangelicalism. Up until now this humility has served as pretty good lubricant.

When I first became intersted in the EC people like McLaren were asking good questions. The same questions a lot of us were asking. I’ve found that when you ask questions without providing much in the way of answers people will generally agree with you. Everyone wants to think their answers are the right ones, so when somebody important asks the same questions and provides vague directions for answers there is a temptation to fill in the blanks with your answers. I think that is what happened to me in the early days of my involvement with the Emerging Church.

As time went on the “answers” became more clear from the revisionsists I recognized that I really wasn’t on the same page. It looks like Robby Mac has discovered something similar. Just over a year ago Forge posted a paper responding to DA Carson’s criticism of the EC and at first glance Forge seemed to be distancing themselves theologically from Emergent Village. This paper generated some controversy and was subsequently removed.

I’m relieved some of these distinctions are coming out. Ministry is hard enough by itself. I’d rather not have to explain to people that I don’t hold position XYZ that recently came to light in the latest book with an inflammatory title.


Battlestar Galactica is returning

Battlestar Galactica is returning


We bought a house

We bought a house

Carol and I finally bought our house. It is good sized bungalow a mere 2 blocks and change from the edge of the downtown core. We live in Caswell Hill. Of Saskatoon’s core neighbourhoods it is probably the one with the highest average income. Still the average family in this neighbourhood makes fifty thousand dollars less than the one we are moving out of. Even though I sensed a call to live in an inner city neighbourhood I discovered there is almost no other parts of the city we could afford to live in. Housing prices have increased dramatically in the last few years. The owners of the house we bought sold it to us for 20 thousand dollars more than they bought it for. Looking at what houses were selling for I think we got a fair price.

I’m really happy with our purchase. The house has 5 bedrooms in total and two extra rooms to finish off or develop. The attic was once lived in and could be developed as bedroom or a study. The main floor has lots of windows including a heated porch. A great place for blogging even in the winter. I’m very very excited about all the possibilities. I get my own office and a “man cave.” It is going to be great.

I’m also looking forward to the challenges of home ownership and renovations. While I’m somewhat experienced in simple handy man projects I’ve never attempted anything complicated. I love to learn by doing. There are all kinds of things I could tackle with this house. Cosmetic changes, flooring, insulation, and energy efficiency are all on my mind.

I am pumped.


If everyone was listening

If everyone was listening

Do you ever listen to a song and think it speaks so well to a situation you are in even though it certainly wasn’t written with that intention?

Supertramp – If Everyone Was Listening

The actors and jesters are here

The stage is in darkness and clear

For raising the curtain and no-one’s quite certain

Whose play it is

How long ago, how long?

If only we had listened then

If we’d know just how right

We were going to be

For we dreamed a lot

And we schemed a lot

And we tried to sing of love before

The stage fell apart


If everyone was listening, you know

There’d be a chance that we could save the show

Who’ll be the last clown to bring the house down?

Oh no, please no, don’t let the curtain fall

Well, what is your costume today?

Who are the props in your play?

You’re acting a part which you thought

From the start was an honest one

Well, how do you plead?

An actor indeed! Go re-learn your lines

You don’t know what you’ve done

The finale is begun:


If everyone was listening, you know

There’d be a chance that we could save the show

Who’ll be the last clown to bring the house down?

Oh no, please no, don’t let the curtain fall

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Signposts takes on tithing

Signposts takes on tithing

They have some interesting links and posts about tithing.

Russel Kelly vrs Paul De Jong

From Ghana with Love

Russell Kelly vrs Allan Meyer

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The first home we looked at was listed with MLS and we used a realtor. The person we dealt with was very nice and walked us through the process of making offers and such. The experience was positive.

As far as the web goes is far superior to The search isn’t as extensive but their interactive map is great. The pictures are on average are more numerous and of much higher quality. On Saskhouses once the listing goes up you can see it. With there is at least a one day delay.

A better place to view MLS listings is Point 2 Homes.

Today I looked at private sale listed with This time the owner was showing me the home. This was an excellent experience. We just chatted openly and honestly about the house. He was able to answer lots of questions and give me the history of the house. We talked about what I was able to offer and what he was hoping to get. Unfortunately the numbers weren’t quite close enough. I left my name and number. I told him that he could probably get more than I was able to offer but if it didn’t look like people were biting he could give me a call.