Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

Has Canada crossed the line? Was the post-hockey rioting in Vancouver the last straw? Should we toss Canada in a cell and throw away the key?

Al Capone once famously claimed he didn’t “even know what street Canada is on.” But I think we know that, kidding aside, Canada is a big and populous place, having somewhere around 34 or 35 million people, almost as many as Binghamton.

At any time, some of these millions are behaving well, others badly. With perhaps a few exceptions that we can debate in psychology class, every individual human being is responsible primarily for his own conduct, not that of anyone else.

So why does a New York Times story, “Hockey Hangover Turns Into Riot Embarrassment,” report that after Canadian thugs went on a rampage when their team lost a hockey game, “a nation that takes pride in its reputation for peaceful coexistence wrestled with questions about possible flaws in the national character”?

First of all, “the nation” didn’t fret about this. Certain people did.

Second, thugs who use sports and team rivalries — or trade agreements or any other grievance — to rationalize random destruction are nothing new in the world. Journalist Bill Buford published a visceral account of the British soccer-thug scene. Read Among the Thugs and you’ll know that the conduct of the rampaging rioters has nothing to do with the “national character” of either most fans or the little old lady down the street.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

By: Redactor


  1. PaulBartomioli says:

    Once again, only half the story is told.

    Yes, events were recounted accurately. What the times and other supposed reporting agencies ignored was this:

    “As we are getting ready to attend the conference in July,” says one of two Vancouver-based readers who checked in over the weekend, “I write to update you on the events following the Stanley Cup final hockey game.

    You have seen the pictures of the riot in the streets. I am not sure you have seen or heard of the response of Vancouver’s people.

    That night as rioters were setting vehicles on fire, smashing storefronts and looting, there were numerous heroes. These were the persons who stood in front of cars to defend someone else’s property. Others were standing in front of storefronts — some in lines, but sometimes it was just one
    individual who chose to face down anarchy.

    That night, a Facebook site was set up to encourage Vancouverites to get downtown the next morning to help clean up the mess. More than 10,000 persons signed up and many were there the next morning picking up debris, sweeping away their disgust and dismay.

    There is a Facebook campaign under way. Persons with pictures and videos of rioters who created the havoc are posting the pictures onto Facebook, identifying parties if they are known or asking others to identify the parties. Those pictures are being tagged with names, and Facebook braggarts
    about their role are being noted. Arrests based on this outpouring of
    public-assisted information have begun.

    Yesterday, citizens spontaneously began writing Post-it sticky notes and placing them on police cruisers thanking them for the work they had done, the danger they had faced the night before. One police officer said he had never before experienced such a public display of support and gratitude.

    We were angered and embarrassed by those events. Please affirm to your
    readers that Vancouver continues to be a safe and beautiful city for
    conferences. I look forward to seeing you there.”

    This was posted on “The 5 Minute Forecast,” at

    Just thought you should know “The Rest of the Story.”

  2. Sharon I. Rideout says:

    “ARE Canada a Thug Nation?” Am I missing something in grammar?

  3. Dagney says:

    PaulBartomioli: That part, of course, is not newsworthy to our leftist media. I appreciate you letting us know, though. It’s a wonderful story that should get out.

    Sharon: Comprehension of the story body is needed to understand the title.


    I’m of the opinion that more and more we need to emphasize that the largest minority in existence is the individual. Once that is pounded into all the “collectivist” leftist goons and everyone else doing harm to our freedoms, maybe our individual liberties will become important to defend again.

    What does this have to do with the above story? Big picture: The COLLECTIVIST mindset.

  4. I’m with Sharon I. Rideou and find “Are Canada a Thug Nation?,” grammatically staggering.

    Canada is (ALWAYS!) singular and, like the headline and this sentence, are not Right — although a few Canadians is.

    And I’m with PaulBartomioli. Thank you, Paul, for telling us the rest of the story.

  5. Paul Jacob says:

    Sharon, Brian — It’s a joke. The whole point of the title using the word “are” instead of “is” is to emphasize that Canada is singular as one country, but there are many people (plural) who make up that country.

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