Friday, February 05, 2010

Trolls and prostate cancer

Jack Layton has contracted prostate cancer. Most of the comment boards on Canadian news outlets are filling up with messages along the lines of “Get well soon, Jack” with the occasional proviso of “I don’t care for your politics, but I wouldn’t wish this on anyone. So get well soon anyhow.”

It’s a free country and anyone who can type is welcome to leave their two cents, but when you cruise the boards you’ll see a lot of word-for-word cross-posting, sometimes under different names. There's either some very efficient posters out there or the Astroturf really does bloom 365 days a year. Cruise them for yourself and look for the trends; I’ve just chosen the ones that caught my attention.

Mildly snippy
, from the National Post-

“I wish Jack a speedy recovery, I'd say god bless but that would offend the socialists.”

The old switcheroo, from

“I don't care much for his cancer, but I hope his political views flourish.”

Let’s beat up the CBC, from

“I'm just waiting for the CBC and the leftwing press gallery to start blaming PM Harper. What are they going to call this one - prostategate?”

Something barbed and not quite effective that invokes Nixon
, from the Globe and Mail-

“I just donated $2 to help find a cure for cancer. In that Richard Nixon War on Cancer kinda way.”

, from the Star:

"No one is indispensable. The leadership of a political party in Canada is a full time job that requires all of the energy and time that any individual can muster. The fight against cancer will require all of the energy and time that any individual can muster. This is the time for Jack Layton to step down and allow someone else to take over. The NDP party is far bigger than any one individual. Jack is not irreplaceable. He should step down until he beats this cancer then he can run again for the leadership." (mirrored on the Post as well)

Those darn unions and I'm sorry but those darn unions, from

At the announcement of Layton’s press conference:

"I hope he is quitting. I think I almost have it enough (sic) and will move out of Toronto too many unions."

After the cancer was announced

"I put my comment before he announced his condition and I was shooting in the darn (sic) knowing consequences of dealing with unions. Just because it turned out to be worse than I predicted doesn't mean I am the bad guy. I hate to be right but more I hate unions and anyone supporting them."

Glass-half-full and crisis is another name for opportunity
, from

“There will probably be an outpouring of sympathy and not to be too strategic about this - but older men are a demographic where the NDP really needs to do a lot better - so maybe this can open some doors.”

Everyone’s got an opinion, after all.


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